Like their real-life counterparts, the moms of cinema are a diverse bunch: Kind, strong, selfless, selfish, protective, cruel, fierce, complicated, flawed…but perhaps the most realistic and identifiable movie moms are those that are unequivocally badass, embodying the spirit of the sacrifice, devotion and strength required to raise your difficult butt. With Mother’s Day fast approaching (you did order those flowers, right?), we’ve chosen to celebrate by honoring 12 of the most badass moms in movie history. Maybe you can treat your own badass mom to a mini-marathon featuring some of our picks this weekend.

In the spirit of the holiday, we decided to not rank the moms we picked for this list — they’re all awesome, ferocious and tough-as-hell in their own ways. Sure, there are plenty of nice movie moms, and several that are complex and real, but we wanted to honor those cinematic mothers who are badass mothers, if you know what I mean. Real-world moms may not wield a sword like Beatrix Kiddo or fight giant, drooling aliens like Ellen Ripley, but they’re every bit as strong, determined and wise as these women…and yeah, OK, they could probably beat the crap out of some bad dudes and save the world if needed.

The Most Badass Moms in Movie History

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