I don’t normally do fan theories, I don’t know why I just don’t, but I was watching Stepmom the other day and came up with a pretty good one.
Stepmom, is a heartwarming movie about a woman, Jackie, who has cancer and is trying to raise her children with her divorced husband. Her ex-husband is dating a photographer named Isabelle. Isabelle doesn’t know the first thing about kids, but is slowly learning by helping with Anna and Ben. Of course Jackie is having a hard time with another woman in her childrens’ lives and wants to keep hating Isabelle, until she learns her cancer has spread and it is a waiting game. Jackie slowly relinquishes her hatred and some control with the knowledge that Isabelle loves the children and will need to learn quickly, the best way to take care of them.
Through the movie we laugh, we cry and feel the pain from both sides. While the mom is still alive we go through the seven stages of grief while coming to terms with having a new stepmom and losing their mother. Friendship grows from two unlikely women.
My theory is that the movie takes place after the mother dies but before Isabelle marries the kids’ father. We already see the seven stages of grief, so it makes sense that this is after the mom has passed. The daughter, who spent more time with the mom, represents anger. She is angry her mom is gone and her dad is trying to replace her. The son is denial as he is too young to completely understand what happened the father is going through acceptance, as well as depression.
The scenes with Jackie and kids, can be memories of how it used to be or possible hallucinations from wanting it to be different. When Isabelle is interacting with Jackie, this could be Isabelle trying to channel Jackie’s spirit and think about what she would do to help the children in the situations. We see the father trying to move on but we see him interacting with his ex-wife and see weak moments in him. During Christmas he doubt’s his ability to live without her.
When we see scenes of Jackie at the hospital or with her doctor, that is the back story unfolding so we know why we are watching a movie about a family going through grief.
This theory certainly makes the movie sadder, but even more endearing.