In a scathing attack on a movie called Mother!, Kyle Smith of The National Review wrote this week that the film ‘is a macabre pastiche of people’s most cherished and deeply held beliefs.’
Deliberately grotesque and nauseating, and seemingly engineered to outrage Christians, especially Catholics, Mother! represents a stain on the reputation of Paramount Pictures … It may be the most vile and contemptible motion picture ever released by one of the major Hollywood studios.
Written and directed by Darren Aronofsky, the movie – described here as “a surreal nighmare drama” – stars the filmmaker’s girlfriend, Jennifer Lawrence, as a timid, frail housewife who wishes she could have a baby with her husband (Javier Bardem), an acclaimed writer.
After providing a synopsis of the plot under the headline “Jennifer Lawrence’s Grotesque Spoof of the Nativity”, Smith says:
Loud, extravagant, and obnoxious, Mother! is the kind of film that makes you want to walk out, demand your money back, then file for a restraining order that would forbid the director from coming within 500 miles of any filmmaking equipment again.
The following groups of people should take care to avoid Mother at all cost: pregnant women, those with nervous constitutions or heart conditions, and anyone who happens to be burdened with good taste.
A biblically-infused version of torture porn.
However, according to this report, the film, which opened yesterday, has received mostly positive reviews. The New York Post said the religious similes are “easy enough to pick up if you know in advance that they’re there,” while also noting that the film is simply “terrifying.”
It has received a 6.9 rating on IMDb.
Rolling Stone called it:
A biblical allegory, with intimations of Rosemary’s Baby.
The Associated Press said “the Old Testament crashes into modern anxiety” in the film.
Nick Vadala of Philly.com wrote:
From the religious and political imagery to its remarks on celebrity culture and the nature of creativity, Mother! is a film seemingly designed for any number of interpretations.
Meanwhile, Lawrence isn’t exactly a favourite in conservative circles these days as she recently suggested the devastating hurricanes in Texas and Florida were signs of “Mother Nature’s rage and wrath” at America for electing Donald Trump.