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Anyone can have an accident.
~ Mrs. Mott under the name Peyton Flanders.

Mrs. Mott (known by her fake deceiving name Peyton Flanders) is the main antagonist of the 1992 psychological thriller movie The Hand That Rocks the Cradle. She is a vengeful widow posing as a live-in nanny.

She is portrayed by Rebecca De Mornay, who also played Natalie Koffin from Mother's Day.


After losing her obstetrician husband, money, home, and baby and undergoing an emergency hysterectomy, Mott learns about Claire Bartel, the woman who filed a complaint about being sexually molested by her husband, which had driven him to suicide. Overwhelmed by grief and distress, Mrs. Mott plots revenge on Claire.

With that, she poses as a nanny, under the pseudonym of "Peyton Flanders", and is soon hired by the Bartel family after she make a highly favorable impression. She breast feeds their baby son Joey, talks Claire's daughter Emma into keeping secrets from her mother to turn her against her, and hits on Claire's husband Michael, all in her attempts to ruin Claire's life and steal her family away. Mrs. Mott later convinces Claire that Michael might be having an affair with his ex-partner, Marlene Craven, and sets them up to look like they are meeting with each other in secret.

Later on, Solomon, a fence builder and friend of the family, accidentally spots Mott breastfeeding Claire's baby while she's out, to which Mott aggressively insults him and tells him to keep his mouth shut. Knowing he could be a liability, she later has Solomon fired after planting Emma's underwear in his tool wagon. Meanwhile, Marlene discovers the same wind chimes on the Motts' house, does research on Dr. Mott and notices a photograph of him next to "Peyton." She then goes to the library and while on a microfiche, discovers from a newspaper article that "Peyton" is really Dr. Mott's widow.

Marlene rushes to Claire's home to warn her about Mott, but Mrs. Mott is there and Marlene reveals she's aware of who she really is. Realizing that Marlene can expose her true identity, Mrs. Mott lures her into Claire's greenhouse. As Marlene enters, she is killed by falling glass which had been rigged by Mott earlier in order to kill Claire. Mrs. Mott then empties all of Claire's inhalers, as Claire is heavily asthmatic; when Claire finds Marlene's body, she almost dies after suffering an asthma attack. Mrs. Mott attempts to engage in seductive behavior toward Micheal while Claire is in the hospital, but she appears to be annoyed when he rejects her advances.

Claire catches on to the truth of "Peyton's" true identity and returns home to confront her, punching her in the face before firing her. Mrs. Mott says that she and Michael were having an affair, but Michael rebukes it; when Mrs. Mott recalls that he told her there was only one woman for him, Michael replies that he meant Claire.

Mott leaves peacefully, but returns to the house that night to take Emma and Joey for herself, and kill Claire and Michael. She knocks Michael out with a shovel and attempts to beat Claire to death, but Solomon arrives to rescue the kids from Mott's clutches. Mrs. Mott attacks him but is then confronted by Claire, and they engage in a fight. Claire fakes another asthma attack in order to appear weakened, whereupon Mott taunts her, boasting about her exaggerated affection for Micheal and the children. After being surprised by Clarie, Mott is distracted by Solomon, Clarie then quickly pushes Mott through the attic window, who crashes down onto the lower rooftop before landing on the garden fence, impaling and killing her.



  • The title of the movie comes from William Ross Wallace's poem with the words "The hand that rocks the cradle is the hand that rules the world".


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