When Rocco (Frank Lotito) seeks to pursue a romantic interest with Katie (Holly Valance) his road block to happiness is his doting, over protective Italian mother (Carmelina Di Guglielmo) who has successfully kept Rocco living at home with her lasagna, cleaning and washing for all his 35 years.
As Frank attempts to ween and negotiate himself out of his predicament he is ably assisted by his employer, Theo (George Kapiniaris), best mate Anton (Steve Mouzakis) and neighbour, Mrs Cotoletta (Maria Venuti.)
This is a light hearted Australian romantic comedy in the 1950s Rock Hudson and Doris Day style played out in the ‘wog’ genre of such films as My Big Fat Greek Wedding and those made locally by Nick Giannopolous.
Does it work? Well, hell, yes it does. Frank Lotito (also writer and producer) makes a great leading man and sustains his bumbling good humour throughout. Holly Valance is delightful, maintaining her role as the delightful straight girl with stamina, and the comic thrusts of Carmelina Di Guglielmo, George Kapiniaris and Maria Venuti are great. The appearance of Pia Miller as a love interest distraction is worth the price of admission as she continues her path towards becoming Australia’s Penelope Cruz.
To be sure, this film will not win AFI awards but although the plot could not be described as complex it and the dialogue are remarkably fresh for genres that have had good coverage over the years.
For those who are in immigrant families where protective parents rule (or have ruled), there is much to be enjoyed and many characters will resonate with audience members from that background, whether Greek, Italian or whatever and of whatever age. Big Mamma’s Boy is simply good fun – get yourself a big bowl of it.
Kryztoff Rating 3.5K
See our interview with stars, Frank Lotito and George Kapiniaris, on Youtube at www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ex96STX2moU