I finally took a few hours last evening to watch I Remember Mama. I’ve been in the process of building up my DVD library these past few years and ordered a copy when it came so highly recommended by a few different bloggers. I purchased the DVD over two years ago, but had not taken the time to sit down and watch it. Now that I’ve done so, I need to watch it again!
It’s a memorable 1946 black and white movie about a Norwegian family in San Francisco circa 1910. Based on the book Mama’s Bank Account by Kathryn Forbes, it was also a very successful play before appearing on the big screen.
The film features Irene Dunn as Mama and a very young Barbara Bel Geddes as Katrin (who tells the story). It begins with Katrin telling us:
For long as I could remember, the house on the Larkin Street Hill had been home. Papa and Mama had both been born in Norway but they came to San Francisco because Mama’s sisters were here, all of us were born here. Nels, the oldest and the only boy, my sister Christine and the littlest sister Dagmar; but first and foremost, I remember Mama.
I don’t want to give away too much of the story as it takes some twists and turns I didn’t expect. Interestingly, there are no faith or religious elements in the story. It would make for a thought-provoking discussion with teens regarding how certain topics are approached when there is no lens of Christian faith through which to see them. But if you enjoy a warm, thoughtful, and humorous story about a loving family, then you will want to check it out.