Friday, September 28, 2018

1056. Mother!

Directed by Darren Aronofsky

I should probably have saved this one for an October watch, since I usually like to stick to a Halloween theme. But this film is barely a horror movie, unless your definition of horror is to be absolutely disgusted. Which I guess is the definition for the weirdos who like movies like Saw....or Mother!

We are going for maximum pretentiousness here, therefore none of the characters have names, so I will refer to them by the actors' names. Jennifer Lawrence is really trying to make her house nice, but Javier Bardem, her temperamental writer husband, keeps allowing strange house guests to invade. Basically, it's a pretty heavy handed allegory for the story of Adam and Eve, Cain and Abel, and then suddenly Jesus Christ.

 As an English nerd, I am a huge fan of allegories. I really enjoyed parts of the interpretation, like the emphasis on God's vanity being a catalyst of destruction. But in order for an allegory to be truly enjoyable, the surface story needs to be grabbing in its own right. And frankly, I was very bored following Lawrence around and watching her ask rude people not to touch things. And what was Kristen Wiig doing in this movie?

Like I said, the movie is really disgusting at the end but hey, so is religious fanaticism. Everyone who says this film is a narcissistic, self indulgent mess would be correct. Still, a few nuggets of brilliance can be mined from this. And Javier Bardem is dreamy.

RATING: **---

Interesting Facts:

Received both boos and a standing ovation at the Venice Film Festival.

Jennifer Lawrence and Darren Aronofsky started dating during production of this film. For someone who is seemingly determined to avoid cliches, he's guilty of a pretty big one here.

Jennifer Lawrence had her own tent during filming, complete with scented candles and a tv that played Keeping Up With the Kardashians on a loop. We have very different definitions of happy places.


  1. I love your reviews! so honest, intelligent, insightful and humorous! Bravo!!!

  2. Good morning Amanda..
    I was unaware this one made it into newer versions of THE BOOK. I saw it as one of the Monday night film showing in our local Arts centre.
    I wish I'd know a bit more about it before I settled down to watch it. I spent far to long going 'eh? What? OK, it's an Aronofsky, it's supposed to be weird, but what the heck is this supposed to be about?' before I twigged 'oh, ok, got it, it's a Christ / Bible allegory', and thus started to understand what they thought they were up to. By then I'd passed so much of the film in a mist of confusion, I was bewildered.
    But having, at last 'got it', I started to appreciate it.. but then they hit me with all the yuch at the end, and was put off. Again.
    Perhaps I should watch it again, in knowledge of what it is, to appreciate the references?
    No thanks...
    I think you have this one mostly nailed here with some lines of yours (may I quote) .. 'really enjoyed parts of the interpretation' and ' few nuggets of brilliance can be mined from this'. I may be a tad more forgiving of it's .. how did you put it ..'narcissistic, self indulgent mess' aspects, but I certainly agree it plunged into several allegory cliche mines.

    And as for a rider that demands Kardashians on loop.... If ever I'm held in Guantanamo for some reason (re-posting face palm worthy Trump clips on face book?)...forget waterboarding. bring on that bunch. sorry, I will talk...