Hollywood heavy-hitter Jennifer Lawrence is one of the highest-paid actresses in the world, and if you see her latest movie, you might understand why. It’s not her best performance, nor is this film a likely Oscar race contender, but mother!, directed by Black Swan‘s Darren Aronofsky, puts Lawrence through the emotional and physical wringer… leaving you wondering whether she or her character will come out the other side in one piece.
The movie, which had its North American premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival this week, draws some superficial comparisons to the aforementioned Black Swan as well as Roman Polanski’s classic pregnancy horror, Rosemary’s Baby. But mother! is different—it’s way crazier than either one of those movies. Here’s why:
Lawrence definitely burst some eyeball blood vessels making this movie
We can’t think of a film where anyone’s cried more often or more hysterically than J. Law does in her role as Mother. It’s unsettling, to say the least.
Can we get a side strained vocal chords to go with that?
You can’t have all that crying without a little screaming. ‘But what if we go with a LOT of screaming instead?’, we imagine Aronofsky saying to his star. ‘Scream like you’re getting attacked by a vicious, cannibalistic cult!’
Did you think we made that cannibalistic cult reference just because we’re hungry?
Because… we didn’t. “This movie kind of pulled me apart and put me back together,” says Lawrence. The metaphor is perfect.
Jennifer Lawrence is ON. FIRE. Like, literally
Do you like barbeque? Darren Aronofsky does. “Once he told me of the ideas that were floating around in his head, I said yes,” Lawrence says of her director. “I got a script. When I read it, I threw it across the room and told him he has severe psychological problems, but that it’s a masterpiece.” Pyromaniacs everywhere agree: Aronofsky has taken the whole ‘Girl on Fire’ Hunger Games bit a little too far.
Calm down, everyone. It’s an “allegory”!
Lawrence told the crush of reporters at the film’s TIFF press conference that mother! is an allegory about the way we treat Mother Earth and her all-forgiving, all-providing character could definitely be seen that way. However, we’d say that the movie is way more interesting looked at as a comment on the idea of celebrity, and it’s relationship to the media and the public. See: Justin Bieber’s latest burnout, the media’s obsession with Taylor Swift’s relationship status, or that highly flammable Amanda Bynes situation.
“The objective of the film was to make a unique movie,” says Aronofsky. “People, including myself, keep complaining about how we keep seeing the same movie over and over again. We might have gone too far, but we definitely made a different ride in the amusement park.”