Darren Aronofsky’s mother! has earned a rather divisive reception so far, but star Jennifer Lawrence says she’s more excited by the reactions to the film than concerned or disappointed.
Reactions to mother! have been all over the place, from both critics and general audiences alike. While the critical response to Aronofsky’s genre-blending movie has been mixed-to-positive on the whole, mother! received an F grade CinemaScore in its opening frame. This even prompted distributor Paramount Pictures to officially issue a statement of its own on the matter, defending mother! as being an “audacious and brave” film that the studio is pleased to have released and prompted so much in the way of conversation.
Academy Award winner Jennifer Lawrence spoke with Entertainment Weekly regarding her own opinion on the film, and how she feels about the overall reaction.
When EW asked whether or not she was surprised by the split reactions, Lawrence answered:
“No, not at all. The people who love it love it and want to see it another time. The people who don’t like, absolutely despise it.”
“There is no middle ground. We knew that it was divided. That’s what so exciting — everybody is going to feel something. It’s going to create a conversation. It’s going to create a controversy. Nobody is going to leave not getting something from it.”
Lawrence touched upon not only the reactions to the film but Aronofsky himself, whom she had started dating once production on mother! had wrapped, calling him “the most controversial director of our time.” mother! is a film based in stark religious allegory, which was a theme that attracted Lawrence from the very beginning:
“It was the most unique sounding movie I’d ever heard, and incredibly brave. I feel like there’s different schools of thought on this movie. Some think: don’t tell anyone anything, let them figure it out on their own. I feel like it’s better to know and understand the metaphor and allegories because then you know what you are looking at. I’ve been spilling the themes and metaphors all over town!”
She even stated that she would add personal annotations to the film while watching it with her family, explaining that she sat them down and would essentially add a live commentary throughout the entire runtime.
There is no doubt that mother! is a highly divisive film, but according to Lawrence, it requires some considerable analysis. It’s the kind of film that is perhaps easy to impulsively judge once the last frame cuts to black, but exploring its deeper meaning is vital in appreciating what Aronofsky was trying to create… assuming you give it the chance.
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