Mother! is a movie that really holds no punches. It’s intense and surreal on levels that are honestly polarizing. Make no mistake, this is a film that you either love or completely hate, but the truth is that it’s a film that sparks conversation.
Darren Aronofsky is a very intense director in every film he makes (Requiem for a Dream, Black Swan, Pi, etc.) His films often circle around the idea of obsession, human habits, and the emotions that they pull out of us. Mother! does the same trick, but with a big difference – he leaves the audience in the dark.
With Requiem for a Dream, we know that our characters are drug addicts, we know that they aren’t malicious and they genuinely mean well but are stuck in their ways, and we know that they ultimately deserve what happens to them. Mother! raises a hundred questions and leaves you to them. He crafted the film merely to be an 'overwhelming, open ended experience.'
None of our main characters have names (but they do have identities), there is no explanation for any of the events that happen, and I personally constantly asked ‘what the fuck is going on?’ as my heart and adrenaline raced.
But this is important, because the point of the film is to stir a response out of the viewer. I have theories on what I was watching, absolutely, and I feel very strongly about them. But it’s also completely likely that you and I have different ideas of what was happening, and how we feel about the experience as a whole. This film is hard to describe without giving any spoilers, and you honestly are better off going in blind. It stars Jennifer Lawrence and Javier Bardem.
It’s not a horror film by any traditional means, but it is fucking dark and haunting. It has nightmare images that I can’t wash out of my head (nor do I want to) and such a streak of confidence throughout it that I’ve gone back multiple times.
I love this film. Sometimes you just want a dumb movie to make you feel good and pass the time, and then sometimes you want something that forces you to question your everyday life. This film is the latter, and although I can’t really recommend it (you have to make the decision on your own), I am absolutely fascinated by this one. In my opinion this is Aronofsky at his artistic best, and I am very excited to see what he delivers next.
‘Til Next Time,