Logan was the first movie I saw in the theater after one year away, over one year ago. Hoping to love it, I instead almost left the theater. Children being violently wounded on-screen? Shouldn’t there be a line?
Now with mother!, I feel like a bit of a hypocrite. It is a terrific film–but it puts the graphic, on-screen adult-on-child violence in Logan to shame in a way that I cannot yet reconcile.
Bluntly, Mr. Aronofsky’s motion picture is not for kids. But it is for adults, especially Christians.
Many of you know that I study ancient languages. In brief, you may be intrigued to learn that the naming conventions become tricky quickly. For example, you’ve likely heard of the Hebrew language. Maybe you’ve even heard that distinct from Modern Hebrew is Biblical Hebrew.
If you’re uncommonly interested in such things, you may be aware that within Biblical Hebrew there are designations for both Early and Late Biblical Hebrew–the difference being mostly related to vocabulary as opposed to grammar. Not surprisingly, Late Biblical Hebrew’s vocabulary shows influences from the surrounding culture’s languages. C’est la vie.
Most of you, however, will not know that there is something before Early Biblical Hebrew, that is clearly related to it, but which dates before it. The scholars who discuss this more ancient Hebrew variant call it Paleo-Hebrew.
See what’s going on?
This language is not exactly Hebrew, but it’s also not exactly a different language, nor dialect for that matter. It probably sounded like Early Biblical Hebrew, but the letters looked different. So to try and capture this complicated relationship, the prefix “paleo” is applied. (Sometimes it is also more simply labeled Old Hebrew.)
mother!, then, is likewise Mr. Aronofsky’s telling of, not the Bible’s story, but the Paleo-Bible’s story–except that there is no such thing, until now. And that is what makes the movie so phenomenal.
It has many of the elements of the Bible; for example, Father is the name of the creative storytelling poet who longs to be loved, and his newborn son is unintentionally killed by Father’s fanatical fans–who then eat the dead baby in some kind of cultic memorial ritual.
I’m telling you too much. You’re not going to watch it.
In case you missed it, last week action film superstar Vin Diesel claimed that his new movie Furious 7 (in theaters this Friday) will win a few academy awards. That was before he saw the trailer to Mission Impossible Rogue Nation, which is Tom “TC-to-me” Cruise’s newest entry in his own unexpectedly lengthy action franchise.
And so yesterday, in a bizarre turn of events, Diesel formally and sheepishly recanted his odd prediction, saying,
“I wanted to be excited. I really thought Furious 7 pushed the envelope and had the perfect mix of everything that makes for a killer flick and a critically acclaimed feature film.”
He then coolly stroked his chin while his eyes looked beyond the horizon, adding,
“And in another Oscar year, maybe it would have won.”
Returning to the moment, he excitedly asked,
“I mean, have you guys see Tom Cruise’s newest trailer? I can’t compete with that. No one can. Much respect.”
Never one to deflect praise, Cruise’s reaction to reporter’s barrage of questions regarding this incident was to simply smile his million dollar smile and say,
“What can I say? Vin knows movies.”