Now that it’s screened at both the Venice and Toronto film festivals, “mother!” isn’t quite the mystery it once was. As most of the world has yet to see Darren Aronofsky’s new thriller, however, questions remain — and, with his film unveiled to the world, Aronofsky is slightly less tight-lipped than he has been in recent months.
IndieWire’s own Eric Kohn moderated the “mother!” press conference at TIFF, which saw its writer/director joined by star Jennifer Lawrence and producers Scott Franklin and Ari Handel. “The whole campaign has been about mystery,” admitted Aronofsky at the outset, “and I think the film plays out very much like a mystery. As you’re watching it, you think you’re watching one thing, and then it shifts and becomes something else.”
“So Jenn, what’s the movie about?” Kohn half-jokingly asked Lawrence. “It’s allegorical, it’s these huge metaphors that are universal, biblical, and [Aronofsky has] created a narrative through them and placed everything into this under the house. It was just incredible and unique; I’d never heard anything like it,” she responded.
Aronofsky also revealed that his star was in close-up for a full 66 minutes of the 121-minute runtime and disagreed with her about how much viewers should know before seeing the film. “We’ve gone back and forth on this,” said Lawrence. “I think it would be a shame to go see this movie and not know what you’re looking at” because, in her words, “I don’t think the allegory is a spoiler. I think it really aids you.” Watch their full conversation below.