Starring Jennifer Lawrence, Javier Bardem, Ed Harris, Michelle Pfeiffer, Domhnall Gleeson,
First and foremost, can we all agree that Black Swan was an outlier when it comes to Darren Aronofsky. His films are the definition of divisive and he delivers stories that mean something to him, and the rest of the audience be damned. Mother is Aronofsky’s satanic horror film which begins like most horror genre pictures do. Creepy secluded house, stranger’s knocking on the door, a young scared woman. Aronofsky teases the audience here, there are so many absurd and unexplained elements, that we tell ourselves, it will all make sense in the end. It’s never explained, and beyond that, some will say he crosses a line that will offend the mainstream majority, if they even make it to the end. If Mother is anything, it’s an anal-retentive personality types nightmare.
Her (Lawrence) husband (Bardem) is a well-known, published poet, looking for inspiration on his next piece. They live secluded from the community so he can focus on writing and she is repairing his childhood home that was destroyed in a fire. Room by room she converts the old home to its former glory, until some uninvited guests knock at the door. She can’t understand why her husband would let these strangers, a man (Harris) and a woman (Pfeiffer) into their home. The guests begin to get under her skin with their forward behavior and breaking not only privacy rules, but important pieces of furniture. In time, she will come to realize she has married Satan and all he wants from her is a new spawn to feed those who seek his attention.
The most rewarding moment in the whole film is when Lawrence finally gets brutally shushed and her manic state is silenced.
If Restoration Hardware ever wanted to fund an abstract horror film, this would be it. For two full, excruciating hours, Oscar winner Jennifer Lawrence screams, whines and pines, as her house is invaded by be hordes of people. She has panic attacks where she drinks cumin water and when she touches her freshly painted hallways, she experiences minor heart convulsions. It becomes clear to the audience very early, that Bardem’s character never wants to be just alone with her in the house. Is he scared of her, or the other way around? Her obsession with order creeps into the audience as we nearly get as upset as she does when we see these violent people ruining her hard work.
The bloody toilet, the murder that occurs in the house, all foreshadow something, doesn’t matter what, just means more blood on the way. Chaos is the new order for this husband and wife. If Aronofsky has an explanation for what’s going on here, he isn’t telling. Even if you watched the film over and over, it would only become more frustrating. Even Pfeiffer admits after reading the script she had no idea what this movie was about. The most rewarding moment in the whole film is when Lawrence finally gets brutally shushed and her manic state is silenced. Aronofsky has created another piece of cinematic garbage that will have people talking and guessing until something better comes along to talk about.
Lawrence stars in her first real piece of cinema garbage.