If you have experienced the trauma of investing emotional labor in someone who turned around to trade in all *your* hard work for their own personal gain, Mother! is the horror story to end all horror stories, because it centers the experience of seeing someone abuse, use, and then both violently dispose of you, and then go on to eternally misrepresent your legacy. If you have not invested emotional labor in a relationship that eventually robbed you, perhaps this movie is not for you.
Let’s do a quick recap. Mother! is the story of a young woman who moves to the country to live with her new husband, who is a famous writer. After experiencing strange (supernatural?) phenomena in the house, the woman gives birth to a son. The writer invites his fans to come see his newborn son and, out of their obsession with the writer, the fans tear the baby apart and begin consuming the baby’s flesh. The mother tries to save the baby and is in turn mutilated by the mob. As she dies, her husband brings her to the basement, where he turns her into a diamond, a diamond that he places on his mantel before he sits down to write another story.
This is not the story of someone who invests in a relationship and gets nothing in return. Rather, it is the tragedy of an isolated human whose partner consumes her as if she was a nonrenewable fossil fuel to be used as inspiration. Mother! is the story of a man who uses vulnerable people as vessels for his inspiration, rather than sacrificing his own flesh and blood to his art.
The creepiness of the diamond analogy intensifies when one considers that it takes enormous pressure to make a diamond. The main character, played by Jennifer Lawrence, is the subject that pressure, and is indeed transformed into an inhuman piece of cold rock – a diamond, to be showcased and admired for her sacrifice.
In my opinion, the writer was able to produce so much art because he used his partners as emotional fuel. Stories like Mother! are a cautionary tale for individuals who might find themselves trapped in isolating relationships, with their partner sapping their life force to fuel their own projects, the way a vibrator uses a battery to bring a clitoris to orgasm.