Tully hit theaters today, and the critics and audience agree that it is a must see (Certified Fresh on Rotten Tomatoes)! As I mentioned in my review, Tully is a raw, realistic look at motherhood and the breaking points that we as mother face. I walked out of the theater and told the ladies that I was with that Marlo, played by Charlize Theron, is my spirit animal. I relate not only to her character but also to Charlize Theron as a person. I have a mouth like hers, and I’m passionate like her as well.
Focus Features brought me to Los Angeles to interview the cast of Tully. Here are some of the great questions we had for Charlize Theron. You can see the whole interview (minus some spoilers) in the video at the bottom of this post.
I wanted to find out more about how Charlize Theron looks at motherhood. Theron is the mother of two children that she adopted and raises with her mother. So I asked what her opinion is on motherhood and how it differs in other countries. Specifically, is there something uniquely American? Or something uniquely South African that stand out?
Charlize Theron: I think there’s something about being a parent that just is the same for everybody. There was this documentary a couple of years ago called Babies. I saw it right before my kids came into my life and it really moved me because ultimately what you see [is] the experiences are very different. And in Mongolia, you can actually tie a kid to a table and not go to jail — and here that would probably be problematic. But ultimately it’s the one thing that I think we all share is just that we’re trying to get through every day — “whatever” — whatever we choose to do will hopefully be the best things for your kids — and it might be different in how we go about it in different countries, but I think, as mothers, I think we’re always in some weird way, every decision gets made based on our kids.
CT: There’s a thing in South Africa, we have this saying, “It takes a village to raise a kid,” and I was raised that way. I grew up with a lot of people around me and my mom — really sharing me with a lot of people and it was just great to grow up that way and for me, it was always going to be how I was going to raise my kids and from the moment they came home, that first night, my village was there, and they got to meet their village, and that village is in their life now and I think will be in their life, in their lives forever.
CT: And I rely on those people. They are kind of like my chosen family. And I value what they bring to my kids’ lives and I know that I’m not solely responsible for how great my kids are. There’s a lot of great people who are bringing so much to their lives.
CT: And I think this movie will maybe start that conversation a little bit more because when we talk about help it’s always — it feels so cold. But you know, help can be something that’s really warm and — it doesn’t have to feel like this isolated thing that you’re bringing in from the outside to help you. I think the more you think about it; it’s like just becoming part of raising a child — instead of just help. I think it makes it — you realize the value in that, and I’m so grateful for the people that I have, not only in my life but in my kids’ lives.
I think the one thing I heard mirrored from everyone we interviewed that it’s about the help we need or receive. Whether it’s from a father, or a family member or a night nanny, it matters on so many levels. The benefits of our children to the mental health of the parents. I believe in the village, and I love mine dearly.
Theron put on 50 pounds for the role of Marlo and admitted in an interview that it was tough to lose the weight this time around and that it caused a bout of depression in her life. The film also tackles aspects of postpartum depression that needed to be discussed including how women heal. There is a line in the film that Tully says, “Girls heal,” which Marlo replies, “No they don’t” Kat asked, “What do you want people to take from that line? How do you think people should feel from that?”
CT: I think it lives in a gray area for all of us. I think it’s different for all of us. But I do kind of agree with what Chelsea said in that interview, that we hurt differently than men and I think we carry pain differently to men. And you know, I love that line. I loved saying it. It felt so right for Marlo. But when I think about myself, I don’t necessarily know that I believe that wholeheartedly. I don’t know if what we experience isn’t just part of building who we are — and is that a bad thing? Does that mean you’re broken? Is that the part that never gets fixed? I don’t know. I kind of like not knowing, too. I mean I think that it’s going to be something that I’m going to experience more, as my journey continues as a woman and as a mom. And — that’s okay. I don’t feel I need to know that answer. It’s good to just acknowledge it and to talk about it. But I don’t know if I have the answer to it. But I do believe in concealer, yes. A lot of it.
PH: What do you hope people, men, and women, take away from the film?
CT: To not feel alone. I know that making this film made me not feel alone. I think the honesty of the conversation that this movie starts is one that you just can’t deny because it’s not truthful. And I think when you live and breathe in that place; then you realize you’re not alone. And I know for myself as a parent, there have been days where I really needed that. I just, I really needed to know that. And I think every parent will tell you that.
CT: And that’s kind of the feedback that we’ve been getting so far. People see this movie, and there’s a lot of moments where they see themselves and feel like that has never been — they have never had that opportunity to see that part of being a parent. And that’s a nice thing. I think when you can kind of do something that makes people feel on the level that that’s raw and honest and undeniably truthful — that’s always a great place to be in.
CT: You know, we didn’t water this down. We never came from an angle to make this more appetizing for moms out there or families out there or trying to say something that felt better about motherhood. We really just went for the truth, and we all responded to that, and I think we just felt like other people would respond to that as well.
That’s a defining answer for me because those were my sentiments to a T. Make plans for a Moms night out and see Tully in theaters now. I promise you; you’ll love it. There is a fantastic twist at the end that I’ll be talking about with Jason Reitman soon so make sure you subscribe, so you don’t miss it!
Want to listen to the whole interview, here is the video!
Check out Charlize Theron, Ron Livingston, and Mackenzie Davis surprising the theater of moms watching the screening.