A home invasion movie like no other, mother! wastes no opportunity to unsettle or alarm with its representations of Christianity, the environment, the creative process, fucked-up house parties or any other metaphor you may care to apply. Jennifer Lawrence is exceptional as, basically, every mother ever (even, yes, metaphorical ones), and Javier Bardem exudes a sly arrogance that pays off in spades once you realise just what Aronofsky's getting at here. It might lean a little too hard into allegory…
Hal Ashby's breezy direction conceals a savage dig at toxic, directionless masculinity in the US armed forces of the Vietnam era. Jack Nicholson's angry young man feels the need to toughen up Randy Quaid's troubled greenhorn before his stint in the brig by teaching him to drink, fight and fuck like what real men do; while we're left to imagine what the result might be for Quaid's character, it's pretty clear that Nicholson's grew up to be A Few Good Men's Col. Nathan R Jessup.