The mythic maximalism of Darren Aronofsky’s “Mother!”
There is a noble (possibly divine), if baroque, purpose behind the kinesthetic density of Araonfsky’s lofty work
This is the credo of the artistic maximalist: more is more. And if there’s one American filmmaker whose talents reveal themselves when stretched out to such spectacles of scaled-up bigness, it’s Darren Aronofsky, whose new film, “Mother!” (stylized “mother!”), might be the most daring, intoxicating, head-shakingly unbelievable, utterly, unashamedly maximalist American motion picture released by a major studio since Terrence Malick’s “Tree of Life” in 2011, or even Richard Kelly’s “Southland Tales” more than a decade ago. It is a film of mythic proportion that valiantly strives to do, well, pretty much everything.
Aronofsky is not the artist-as-God but the filmmaker-as-Frasier-Crane, frantically conducting his overblown orchestra of violence, sex, cannibalism and swollen biblical metaphor, energized by a deeply felt belief that, sometimes, more is more.
This is either the result of a post-graduate course in critical something or other or a spoof and a damn good one at that. I’m going with the Sokal solution, that use of Frasier is the give away.