While seemingly at opposite ends of the emotional spectrum, horror and comedy can make for extremely comfortable bedfellows. Laughter and terror are two of the most visceral responses a filmmaker can hope to elicit from an audience and, when traversed correctly, the ground between them can prove dramatically fertile.
As a filmmaker, Darren Aronofsky has never been one to shy away from the extremes of human behaviour, whether exploring its darkest heart, exposing its deepest psychosis or celebrating its brightest achievements. His latest, mother!, is thematically similar to his Oscar-winning Black Swan, in that it embraces both the lure and lunacy of artistic ambition. Whereas Black Swan was a beguiling, beautifully crafted psychological drama, however, this is an infuriating exercise of cacophonous style over substance.
To be honest, I didn’t know if I was going to write anything about Wonder Woman. So many journalists and critics have written excellent, insightful pieces about the film, its importance and impact that it seemed unnecessary to add my voice to the fray.
But then, in the same week, I saw a scathing Guardian headline which described Gal Gadot as a ‘weaponised Smurfette’ and a comment from someone I (still) follow and admire on Twitter which suggested that, while Gadot is good, the film itself was ‘nothing to get excited about.’ #RedRag.