Review: ‘Mother!’ Will Leave Audiences Talking for Years to Come

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Review: ‘Mother!’ Will Leave Audiences Talking for Years to Come

Michael Taber

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“This movie will change you after you watch it.” That was the tag line for the promotion of this movie.

It may not change everyone but it will leave audiences talking about what they just watched. ‘Mother!’ is a mystery and makes no apologies for it, but it invites the audience to figure it out.

Director and writer Darren Aronofsky (Black Swan) and stars Jennifer Lawrence (Hunger Games) and Javier Bardem (No Country for Old Men) come together for a masterpiece of cinematic art. This movie is visceral and chaotic. The whole time it keeps you guessing what you are watching from beginning to end.

The plot is about a poet, called Him (Bardem), and his wife, called Mother (Lawrence), living in a house in a secluded area. She is renovating the house to please the husband, when they get an uninvited guest, played by Ed Harris, at their front door and the husband invites the man to stay. The next day, the man’s wife shows up, played by Michelle Pfeiffer, and moves in to the house much to the Mother’s disdain. Soon more and more people show up and wreck havoc to the Mother’s house.

There is a sharp contrast in the characters of the husband and his wife, Mother. The husband, Him, pays more attention to the guests, allowing them to steal from the house and abuse it. The Mother just wants to be alone with her husband and create an environment to start a family, but the husband’s lack of attention to his wife brings more conflict within the household.

Jennifer Lawrence’s performance as Mother was exhausting in a good way. She gave everything emotionally and physically. Aronofsky, who has a tendency to draw the best performances out of his actors, did an excellent job in bringing out the best of Lawrence. She deserves an Oscar nod for her role. It was exceptional acting once again from this leading actress.

As the greatest masterpieces in film should do, this movie has many layers to it and can be interpreted in many ways. Some might think that this movie is about a man who becomes a celebrity and his wife is feeling like she is losing her husband. Others could see the movie as the raping of Mother Earth. Many see this as a movie about God and humanity. Well, they would all be correct in this assumption. ‘Mother!’ is all those things and so much more.

The last half of the movie was jaw-dropping. There were times the scenes jump so fast it was hard to process what was going on. This was done on purpose, as it was a collage of chaos, violence, and shocking imagery. Aronofsky’s vision left an effect that can be admired.

Aronofsky made a movie that invokes thought and emotion. He delivered once more on provoking the psychological and moral senses of the audience. This movie fell right in line with his past movies that seem almost like what nightmares are made of: disturbing images in a chaotic environment.

The reception of this movie has been mixed. At the same showing, some viewers walked out of the middle of the movie or booed while others gave a standing ovation. Now, the one thing that everyone of those audience members is doing is talking about it.

A recommendation for audiences going to view ‘Mother!’ is to go into it with an open mind. This is not a fan fare movie looking to entertain the audience with action and explosions. This is a serious movie that demands attention. If you can not be open about certain topics relating with religion, do not see this movie. For those who want to experience art at its rawest interpretation, good or bad, and makes no apologies for being so, then go see ‘Mother!’.

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