Darren Aronofsky may have a small filmography but regardless it is an astounding and solid one. Even at his worst he manages to captivate audiences and deliver sound messages. He has been able to experiment with genres and techniques that makes his work admirable. His appreciation and understating go the darker side of humanity has solidified him as one of the great filmmakers of our time.
In honor of the upcoming horror-drama film Mother!, starring Jennifer Lawrence, Javier Bardem and Michel Pfiffer, here’s a look back at six of Aronofsky’s movies that are with rewatching before taking in the monstrosity that is Mother!.
Aronofsky’s worst reviewed film, it is an epic magical realism romantic drama that mixes elements of fantasy, history, science fiction and even spirituality. It start Hugh Jackman and Rackel Weisz. It’s basically three story lines that involve mortality and the lost of love and one man’s pursuit of avoiding fate.
His directorial debut is as strange as it is provoking, but not for everyone, it follows a paranoid mathematician searches for a key number that will unlock the universal patterns found in nature.
This is Aronofsky’s first take on the blockbuster genre. Although critics liked it general public didn’t treat it quite as well. Its the story of Biblical Noah as he suffers visions of an apocalyptic deluge and takes measures to protect his family from the coming flood. It stars Russel Crowe and Emma Watson.
The most grounded Aronofsky movie yet, it shows his flexibility as a filmmaker and it served as the comeback stage for Mickey Rourke. Even though at first glance it seems like a straightforward movie about fighting it is as thought provoking as the rest of Aronofsky’s films. It also starts Marisa Tomei and it deals with deals with the fear of disappointment and the search for perfection.
Requiem for A Dream
Without a doubt, Aronofsky’s most well known film but surprisingly not necessarily his most critically acclaimed piece of work. His breakthrough film isn’t afraid to make a statement about drug abuse and the humanity behind it. It is simply put, Aronofsky’s magnum opus, plus it launched an acclaimed career for Jared Leto as an actor.
Black Swan was Aronofsky’s first film to pick up nominations for Best Picture and Best Director at the Oscar’s. It also picked up a few Golden Globes and BAFTAs. What made this film such a critic’s favorite? Aside from Natalie Portman’s terrifying and astounding performance, the movie was so visually engrossing that, much like the swan, crawled under your skin and stayed there forever. Black Sawn isn’t the typical Oscar bait, it’s still very much an Aronofsky film: dark, beautiful, thought-provoking, the same style that made the film maker famous years ago.