MPAA Rating: R
Director: Darren Aronofsky
Starring: Jennifer Lawrence, Javier Bardem, Ed Harris, Michelle Pfeiffer
Runtime: 2 hr 01 min
What It Is: Lawrence and Bardem are, like, the perfect couple! She spends her days fixing-up and painting the house, while he, a famous poet, tries to get some words on the page. Their seemingly perfect life is soon interrupted by a mysterious stranger (Harris) and his wife (Pfeiffer), who both very quickly overstay their welcome. Why are they here? What is that sound? Who’s knocking on the door?
What We Think: Aronofsky’s seventh film is a claustrophobic cluster of visceral imagery, religious allegory, and genuinely uncomfortable suspense. He keeps the camera close on Lawrence’s face as each unsettling event sends her deeper into the throes of paranoia. As the viewer, you’re not really sure what’s going on: is this a gaslighting, or are these people really the worst houseguests ever? It’s more than a single location, psychological horror movie as the trailers suggest. The last 30 minutes are absolutely bananas and will definitely have you saying, “I’ve never seen that in a movie before.”
Our Grade: B+, With a rare F grade from CinemaScore and reports of people walking out halfway through, Mother! is truly a cinematic event. It’s a subversive, disturbing and uncouth film that makes Requiem For A Dream seem like a G-rated matinee. Mother! is not for everyone. Quite frankly, I don’t know if it’s for anyone. If you’re a fan of Aronofsky’s past work or want to be a part of a truly zeitgeist moment in cinema, see this, but see it on a full stomach.