Available on Netflix
Do you know when you are having a nightmare and can’t wake up? Terror and despair start to take hold of your body and you don’t know how to react i.e. cry, scream or not move. This is the poignant scenario set up by Darren Aronofsky (Noah) to involve us in the religious allegory of Mãe !, in which each character without a proper name symbolically represents the birth of Christianity.
Unlike Noah (2014), the filmmaker’s latest work, it is not a biblical film, but full of references to the sacred book. Initially, a couple, formed by Jennifer Lawrence and Javier Bardem, lived in isolation in a huge house. While she is responsible for restoring the entire structure of the palace, he spends his days seeking inspiration to write yet another story. Until one night, a stranger (Ed Harris) knocks on the door, introduces himself as a doctor, and says he mistook the big house for an inn.
Confused and overwhelmed by the situation of having a stranger under her roof, Jennifer Lawrence maintains a polite tone in the face of her discomfort even as the stranger’s wife (Michelle Pfeiffer) emerges and asserts herself as the owner of the space. .
Little by little, we feel Jennifer Lawrence’s unease at the presence of unwanted guests. The actress delivers a brilliant performance with measured tones, from the low-key character to dramatic interpretations when everything starts to fall apart. The camera walks very closely on your face and body, guiding us through the projection. So, little by little, the house becomes a place of agony.
Unlike the delusions of Requiem for a Dream (2000) and Black Swan (2010), Mother! clings to the literal sense, but in the sense of surrealism. This is because the events are totally unexpected and outside the dimension accepted as social. Even living with the growing chaos, Jennifer Lawrence tries to keep her home intact, while her husband is steeped in vanity and seeks love from strangers. The idea of being adored by the foreign couple strengthens it, like food for the body.
Lawrence unleashes all his talent which has earned him three Oscar nominations and possibly one more for next year.
Javier Bardem brilliantly plays his role of seducer and dominator. He is the power over all things and especially over his wife. The benevolence of his actions during the film causes us the most distress, his greatest need is to be loved above all else. You’ve heard that before, haven’t you? Her presence, however, is not as striking as that of Michelle Pfeiffer, even in a supporting role.
Mom! this is not a horror movie, there are no scary scenes, however, it is terrifying as the camera follows Jennifer Lawrence from all sides, detailing the process of getting through each character from the confusion, infatuation, horror, sorrow, fear to redemption.
It is a work that questions every moment, all the details mean and it is good to pay attention to what is happening, especially in the house, one of the biggest elements of this macabre fable. As confusing and hard to buy the main idea, as the film draws us into a proportion of absurdities, Aronofsky presents the audience with a simple explanation, which makes this feature film a fantastic work. Mom! is an artistic, figurative and provocative film, so it is to be digested slowly and with a lot of interpretation. If you like challenges, have fun!
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