Anne Hathaway and Jessica Chastain's new psychological thriller Mother's Instinct is not for the faint hearted.

Two of our favourite actresses have teamed up for a new project and excuse us for a moment while we contain our giddiness. 

Anne Hathaway and Jessica Chastain need no introduction but it has to be said that they are two absolute powerhouses who have dominated Hollywood throughout their respective careers.

Hathaway and Chastain have been firm friends for many years now (perhaps they've got something in common with both being Oscar winners) and they've brought their off-screen chemistry to a brand-new feature film for us to fawn over.

Mother's Instinct stars Hathaway and Chastain and is a gripping psychological thriller set in the 1960s which will see both of the seasoned queens really exercising their theatrical chops. 

What is Mother's Instinct About?

Set in suburban America in the 1960s, two housewives, Alice and Céline, become friends living next door to each other. However, their close bond becomes rattled when a tragic accident takes place involving one of their children.

There's a very perfect gloss on this story — the picture of domestic bliss — but underneath the surface this veneer is challenged when a small child passes away.

The film sets out to tackle some big themes including motherhood, postpartum anxiety, blame, responsibility and ultimately shines a light on the complexities of female friendship.

As the trauma of one of their children's deaths unravels pain, guilt and blame takes over the suburban dream. Both Alice and Céline's marriages start to buckle under the weight of the tragedy and slowly the incident eats away at them.


Take a look at the trailer for Mother's Instinct on Prime Video. Post continues below.

Who is in Mother's Instinct?

Anne Hathaway and Jessica Chastain take on the two lead roles in Mother's Instinct, Hathaway playing Céline and Chastain as Alice.

Acting alongside Hathaway and Chastain is a fantastic supporting cast which includes Josh Charles (The Good Wife), Norwegian actor Anders Danielsen Lie, Caroline Lagerfelt (Sweet Magnolias) and Eamon Patrick O'Connell making his debut.

Anne Hathaway and Jessica Chastain starring in Mother's Instinct. Image: Prime Video.


Back in 2020 it was announced that Belgian filmmaker Olivier Masset-Depasse had come on board to direct, however in 2022 it was confirmed that Benoît Delhomme had replaced him. 

Delhomme is most notably known in the film industry as an impressive cinematographer (if you saw one of his recent film's Lady Chatterley's Lover you'll be well aware he knows how to work those camera angles) but for Mother's Instinct he has dipped his toe into the world of directing with a stunning debut.

The script was written by Barbara Abel and Sarah Conradt and the project was produced by Chastain's company Freckle Films.

Is Mother's Instinct based on a true story?

While Mother's Instinct isn't based on a true story, it is a new interpretation of some older material that has been brought to life with a fresh eye. The film is based on a novel of the same name written by Barbara Abel (who has come on board this project as a screenwriter).

Back in 2018, the novel was first adapted into a screenplay for a Belgian feature film named Duelles. The original film was directed by Olivier Masset-Depasse who was originally attached to the remake but stepped away due to personal reasons. 

What else do we know about Mother's Instinct?

When the original film Duelles debuted there were many similarities drawn to the great films of Alfred Hitchcock and it's clear they've taken that inspiration and turned it on full tilt for Mother's Instinct

Of course there is the clear psychological thriller aspect that has garnered the most comparison, but it's also clear that the incredibly polished 1960s wardrobe plays a big part in drawing a line between Mother's Instinct and the Hitchcockian genre.


Despite the dark nature of the film, the wardrobes bring a zest of high glamour and style. Chastain told Elle UK she loved stepping into this world of fashion and would even love to see that extend to current trends.

"One thing I’d love to see nowadays is that sense of glamour from the 1960s," she told the publication. "I love hats and gloves with clothing, I think it's so chic. And yet, y'know, it’s not happening right now."

Anne Hathaway in Mother's Instinct. Image: Prime Video.


When it came to handling such sensitive subject matters in this film, both Hathaway and Chastain have opened up about how they approached the project.

"You always want to keep yourself and your experience removed, just because you're dealing with the subject matter that's so painful," Hathaway told Glamour UK. "But it just underscored my deeply held belief that mental health is everything – and mental health support is so important.

"One of the things that broke my character's heart was how stigmatised she was in her grief, and that stigma isolated her and just made everything worse. Something that I think the movie does do a good job of is showing that – especially during this time – women were so isolated, and they had such prescribed identities that were based on outside notions of gender. And that's really, really toxic."

While Chastain added it was really important for her to fully embrace all sides of her characters trauma in order to give grace to the experience of a woman grieving.

"For my character, really, it was an exploration not only in motherhood, but of anxiety," she told Glamour UK. "When we meet her, we realise she's been committed before. She faces a lot of restrictions and pushback against the woman she longs to be, and I feel quite different in my life. So it was more about trying to connect to something outside of myself."

When will Mother's Instinct premiere?

Mother's Instinct will be available to stream on Prime Video Australia from Thursday, June 7.

Feature Image: Prime Video.

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