Denseman on the Rattis

Formerly known as the Widmann Blog


Wrong ages

Mamma Mia!
Originally uploaded by Nick Grabowski

I was going to blog this just after I saw Mamma Mia! in the cinema, but then I forgot, but now Phyllis got it on DVD for Christmas, so we watched it again recently.

Plot spoilers follow.

In the movie, Donna (played by Meryl Streep, born 1949) is playing the mother of Sophie (played by Amanda Seyfried, born 1985).

While 36 is a fine age for having a daughter, she’s very clearly described as having been young and foolish at the time, which to me says no more than 25, and probably just 20. So the age gap is about 15 years too big.

Also, Donna’s lovers at the time of Sophie’s conception are shown dressed as hippies, which would date this at between 1968 and 1975.

But the film takes place in the present, so Sophie must have been conceived about 10 to 15 years before she was born.

Now, if the movie had been set in the mid-90s (at about the time when the musical was conceived), it could all have been made to fit nicely: A mother in her early forties conceived her daughter, now in her early twenties, in the early 70s.

However, for some weird reason (probably that the people behind Mamma Mia! were thinking of Donna as their contemporary), they decided to keep the background story and Sophie’s age, but to make Donna old enough to have been a hippie in her youth.

It’s all a bit strange, and it means the movie is almost clinically cleansed of people between 25 and 50.

If I had been in charge, I would definitely have set the movie in the mid-90s, with a much younger actress as Donna.

3 thoughts on “Wrong ages

  • Ah, but don’t you see ,..,Your approach is simply & purely, clinical ,, Far too clinical in fact ,, Who works out all this stuff when watching such a great feel good movie .,., ( apart from you of course Thomas ! ) Your movie would not have broken the all time sales record for a DVD musical !
    No one else ( regardless of age )could possibly have played Donna any better than Meryl. She is the definitive actress ,.,. for any part ,, so, you are hereby expelled from the MS Fan club ,, so there 🙂

  • Nope ,,, or as she would say ,, Nope ?


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