There’s a limit to what you would let someone say about your mother.
No way will we allow our mothers to be humiliated beyond a line of acceptable social humour or criticism.
We defend our mothers.
This is a vivid tool when you are asking the question ‘What is this situation like?’. It could be like when you need to defend your mother.
Like the way we defend our characters: how they’re always right and believe – for better or for worse – what they say or do.
It makes a great benchmark for your ‘like’, ‘as if’, or ‘substitution’.
The fact that there is no closer tie than between a mother and child can be extremely useful for you as an actor.
It’ll help you not give in when you act; assist you to stand your ground; help you tap into that pool of power you possess; it’ll help you mean what you say.
Vividly putting your mother in your mind’s eye and harkening to your love for her can help keep you away from acting. You’ll be more truthful. It can be especially useful when you’re preparing a scene.
If, in a realistic improvisation in acting class, one actor is baiting the other by making fun of their mother, watch what happens to the recipient actor as the level of ridicule goes up. There will be a certain limit – a line crossed – where the actor stops acting and says ‘Stop!’ because the insult is too much. It’s that depth of connection that you won’t violate that is so useful.
As an actor you must find intimate methods that assist you to believe.