film characters The Greatest Single Mother Characters in Film

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List Rules Vote up your favorite characters

Most mothers will do anything for their children – and that includes the fictional ones, too. That maternal instinct has proven inspiring for Hollywood screenwriters, and over the years they've penned a number of memorable single mother characters in their movies. Whether these fictional figures are fighting for custody of their kids, trying to make their way in the world, or even struggling for survival, the women on this list are some of the greatest fictional single moms of all time.

So, who is the greatest single mother character in film history? Maybe it's the eternally tough Sarah Conner, as played by Linda Hamilton in the Terminator films. She battled evil cyborgs and her own sanity to protect her son John's future. Or maybe it's Dorothy Boyd, who captured moviegoers' hearts in Cameron Crowe's classic 1996 film Jerry Maguire. And who could forget Erin Brockovich? The real-life woman who inspired the Julia Roberts-starring movie fought for environmental regulations for a small town. But not every single mother on this list is the maternal type. Margaret White (Carrie) and Joan Crawford (Mommie Dearest) are the kinds of single moms who would make you think twice about breaking curfew.

Which single mom character is your favorite? Vote up the fictional women that you find the most inspiring or iconic, and vote down those that don't quite make the cut. Remember to add in any characters that were overlooked, too.

1
+ - 77 2
Mildred Pierce is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Greatest Single Mother Characters in Film
Mildred Pierce Mildred Pierce, Dead Men Don't Wear Plaid

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2
+ - 38 2
Annie Hughes is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Greatest Single Mother Characters in Film
Annie Hughes The Iron Giant

3
+ - 83 10
Christine Collins is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Greatest Single Mother Characters in Film
Christine Collins Changeling

4
+ - 95 13
Erin Brockovich is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Greatest Single Mother Characters in Film
Erin Brockovich Erin Brockovich

5
+ - 92 13
Carol Connelly is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Greatest Single Mother Characters in Film
Carol Connelly As Good as It Gets

6
+ - 83 11
Meg Altman is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Greatest Single Mother Characters in Film
Meg Altman Panic Room

7
+ - 78 10
Mary is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Greatest Single Mother Characters in Film
Mary E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial

8
+ - 79 11
Dede Tate is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Greatest Single Mother Characters in Film
Dede Tate Little Man Tate

9
+ - 67 8
Jenny Fields is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Greatest Single Mother Characters in Film
Jenny Fields The World According to Garp

10
+ - 77 11
Mrs. Brisby is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Greatest Single Mother Characters in Film
Mrs. Brisby The Secret of NIMH 2: Timmy to the Rescue, The Secret of NIMH

11
+ - 74 11
Dahlia is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Greatest Single Mother Characters in Film
Dahlia Dark Water

12
+ - 83 14
Lynn Sear is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Greatest Single Mother Characters in Film
Lynn Sear The Sixth Sense

13
+ - 76 12
Alice Hyatt is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Greatest Single Mother Characters in Film
Alice Hyatt Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore

14
+ - 75 12
Fiona Brewer is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Greatest Single Mother Characters in Film
Fiona Brewer About a Boy

15
+ - 81 14
Mrs. Flax is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Greatest Single Mother Characters in Film
Mrs. Flax Mermaids

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16
+ - 89 17
Dorothy Boyd is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Greatest Single Mother Characters in Film
Dorothy Boyd Jerry Maguire

17
+ - 74 12
J.C. Wiatt is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Greatest Single Mother Characters in Film
J.C. Wiatt Baby Boom

18
+ - 77 13
Mollie Ubriacco is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Greatest Single Mother Characters in Film
Mollie Ubriacco Look Who's Talking Now, Look Who's Talking Look Who's Talking Too

19
+ - 73 12
Molly is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Greatest Single Mother Characters in Film
Molly Cyrus

20
+ - 91 20
Sarah Connor is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Greatest Single Mother Characters in Film
Sarah Connor The Terminator, Terminator Salvation Terminator 2: Judgment Day

21
+ - 66 10
Ms. Cartman is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Greatest Single Mother Characters in Film
Ms. Cartman South Park: Bigger, Longer & Uncut

22
+ - 40 4
Mrs. Gump is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Greatest Single Mother Characters in Film
Mrs. Gump Forrest Gump

23
+ - 71 22
Margaret White is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Greatest Single Mother Characters in Film
Margaret White Carrie, Carrie

24
+ - 31 4
Lady Tremaine is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Greatest Single Mother Characters in Film
Lady Tremaine Cinderella, Cinderella II: Dreams Come True Cinderella III: A Twist in Time

25
+ - 26 81
Joan Crawford is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Greatest Single Mother Characters in Film
Joan Crawford Mommie Dearest