Gonger Reviews: Mother!
Starring: Jenny Lawrence, Javier Bardem, Ed Harris, Michelle Pfeiffer, Brian Gleeson and Domhnall Gleeson. Pretty stacked! Am I right!
Synopsis: I'm just going to lay it out here for you folk: I watched this movie that was so good that even I'm friggin impressed. This is the story of Mother Nature's relationship with God and all the thousands of years humans have inhabited her... It's pretty rough.
Cinematography: The camera work is super tight on Lawrence giving her only a few feet of clearance for blocking and it sells the flick so well. Most of the suspense comes from the way the camera moves. It also drops the audience right on top of the narrative because I always felt I was in her face. Although I don't consider myself part of the the human species, I do understand that this is a film against humanity and that looming camera always gives a harrowing visual. It does get a bit "old hat" though. Matthew Libatique has been doing Aronofsky flicks forever and I can't deny his skill and style but it looks too much like an Aronofsky flick. Is this a bad thing? Well, it's my review so yes, yes it is. All said and done though its pretty freaking wicked so I'm'a give it
Editing: So I get to the theatre, buy my poppin' corn, find my seat (only one in the theatre! The best!), put my feet up, flick starts and in a blink of an eye two hours pass by and I'm left with wanting more! This film flows effortlessly! What a relief! That probably has a lot to do with Michelle Pfeiffer...but more on that later. Andrew Weisblum cuts a lean but juicy flick. The only thing I didn't like is how they broke up the acts. They use a gimmick as if I'm to goddamn stupid to know when we moved to a new act. That bugs the living hell right out of me! Minus 0.5!
Directing: Well. This is definitely a Darren Aronofsky flick. Right down to its DNA it has all the tellings and I'd say it would be a bad thing... if Aronofsky wasn't so freaking kick ass at making movies! Every step he takes is one in the right direction and the vision is so clear. This guy knows what he wants to make and how he is going to go about it. Although the story is ripped right out of the Bible and Time magazine its wholly original and I would attribute all that to the directing.
Acting: I don't like Jennifer Lawrence. She's just so damn bubbly! It makes me sick. As an actress though she's quite good and in this flick, she is powerful! In the last act she explodes with emotion! She will be remembered as one of the greats for this film alone I'm sure (and I'm never wrong). Bardem is great to but I wonder if it was his idea to play God so... airy? I wouldn't get annoyed with the the characters actions but I kind of did with the portrayal. It fit and it didn't. Let's leave that there. Michelle Pfeiffer needs to be in more flicks. I know, I know, I have a massive crush on her but that's beside the point. You guys remember when Beaufort (played by Brian Blessed) enters the King of France's throne room in full plate in Henry V (1989) and totally dominates the room? That's what its like when Pfeiffer enters the scene but she doesn't need no full suite of armour! She commands your attention and you can't take your eyes off her. The camera loves her, too, as her blocking is seamless. Its like she's a ghost moving from scene to scene. Ok, ok, ok! Enough on Pfeiffer. Ed Harris charms the hell out of this flick and at first it's quite sinister to what his motives may be. However, once things become clear that Harris isn't the threat that we think he might be he disarms completely and leaves us with a sympathetic character. Great cast!
Writing: To call Aronofsky's script pretentious (as it has been in some circles) is completely unfounded. This is a fresh take on these biblical elements and I must say being a completely unreligious person I was fascinated by this older-than-dirt story. He flips it on its head by creating this unforeseen environmental story as well. I always say a good flick is a reflection of the times it was made in and this film is a bold-faced statement. It's very cautionary but hopeful and at all times dreadful. When I walked out of the theatre I couldn't believe they let him make it but I'm glad he did. Some of the dialog could have been fleshed out a bit better.
Gonger Final Score
The human race needs a good slap in the face right now (not me though - I'm the best!) and if anything mother! is the open palm dragon strike we need!
Allan Stringer @Gonger_Reviews
Allan Stringer (if that's his real name) hails from the Mutara Nebula and has travelled through space and time to check out the only thing us pathetic humans have to offer: movies. Marvel at his intelligence!