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Anne Parris

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Read my non-spoiler mother! movie review here, but first stay put and buckle up, because here comes as much as I can remember for your mother movie spoiler enjoyment.


First of all, we got the movie time wrong, so we missed the first few minutes where mother! opens on a burning woman, then on a house in a field with no roads leading to it.

When we got there Javier Bardem and Jennifer Lawrence were just hanging out in the house, chilling.

Javier Bardem is Him, the older Husband who is a famous Poet. Jennifer Lawrence is Her, his younger Wife. They don’t actually have kids yet, but no names are ever used in the movie.

The husband hangs out in his study on an upper floor of the house. He’s had big success in his previous works, but seems to be in a slump now. The Wife is a loving and encouraging supporter of his writing.

He tries to write while she works making their house a paradise. Their home is a combination of Pottery Barn and the Magnolia Market collection at Target. She’s like Joanna Gaines in an ash-blond lacefront wig and baggy tops from Anthropologie. Apparently, she’s built the house up from nothing after a fire. Some rooms are done, and some rooms are still in process.

One night there’s a knock on the front door. It’s Ed Harris in an Irish driving cap. He is The Man, an orthopedic surgeon at the nearby hospital. He invites himself in under some flimsy pretext. The Husband is thrilled to have him there to chat, but the Wife offers him tea in that way any women knows you need to not sit down on the good couch. He lights up a cigarette and has to be told not to smoke in the house. He puts his lighter on the hall table.

By the time she comes back with her please-don’t-get-comfortable tea, the guys are sipping from a flask and getting to know each other. She seems prissy when she turns down the booze.

Actually The Man had been told this house is a bed and breakfast, he says trying to look tired. Sounds great, says the Husband. The Wife reluctantly goes into the scary dark basement to retrieve some freshly pressed Boll and Branch sheets from an old trunk, as you do.

As she walks by the hall table, she cat-paw swipes The Man’s lighter off the table where it lodges against the furniture and the wall. Checkov’s lighter.

Time passes, the Man is still hanging around and the Husband is loving it. Yay, company! Then knock-knock, a women, The Woman has arrived in the form of sexy cougar Michelle Pfeiffer. She barges in, and manages in a few sentences to dirty-talk with her husband, hit on the Husband, and dissect everything about the Wife.

Oh, you don’t want kids? No, you do but aren’t sure. Well, you won’t stay young forever, honey.

The Man and the Woman stay, and stay. They make a mess in the kitchen with their spiked lemonade. They interupt the Husband’s writing and the Wife’s spackling the parlor. They leave bloody tissues in the bathroom. When the Wife tries flushing away the Man’s gross tissues, a frigging human heart comes up the pipes and squirts out a little blood when she tries to plunge it.

The house creaks and is sometimes the only sound you hear. Sometimes it sounds like a heartbeat.

The houseguests still stay, revealing they always knew the Husband was a famous poet, The Poet. In His study, they want to keep one of His many copies of His Book, His Words. They want to touch the knickknacks in the study, especially the cool glass lump that has pride of place on the shelves. It’s clear glass with lines of fiery gold in the heart of it. They are not allowed to touch it.

The Man is dying of his lung problems. He wants to hang out a while longer with the Poet. They drink too much, go on about their kids, and hump in the guest bedroom. They monopolize The Poet so he gets no writing done, not that he was creating much of anything new.

Suddendly, the Man and Woman’s grown sons arrive fighting over the Man’s will. The sons are real-life brothers Brian (pronounced breen) and Domnhall (pronounced doh-nall) Gleeson. They are a good fit to play the sons of Ed Harris and Michelle (pronounced mee-chu-lay-lay) Pheiffer.

The sons tumble around like two Looney Tunes characters fighting. The younger son is the parents favorite and the older son is pissed his inheritance will be put in a trust, even though his dad is not even dead yet. They tumble into the guest bedroom and the younger son’s head is pounded so hard he bleeds from all over the nice hardwood floor of reclaimed barn wood.

The Husband throws the older son off his brother so hard that the younger man hits his forehead. It leaves a bloody mark. He runs out of the house.

Everyone else leaves to take the younger son to the hospital. The young Wife is left to lock up and clean up all the blood.


She cleans up, but not all the blood goes from the floor. She covers the stain with a lovely sissal rug from the Martha Stewart Allegory collection available at Macy’s.

The door in the kitchen in unlocked and open. The outcast murdering son pops in, says “You understand, right?” then looks at the audience and winks (not really), running out the front door.

Husband returns. The son has died. Get ready for the wake, says He. The two bereaved assholes show up with a bunch of friends who really make themselves at home. They ask the Husband the Poet to say a few words and he says something faux-deep about the voice yelling in the darkness is their son’s love so blah-blah-blah everybody cry.

The Woman tells the wife she should at least cover up her boobs with some becoming mourning wear. Then we see a pov on Jennifer Lawrence’s cleavage. She changes because there was a sale at lululemon, Ashley.

People keep sitting on the kitchen sink counter and the Wife warns them it’s not braced yet. Checkov’s sink, available at Lowe’s.

The Man and Woman go up to the study. They touch the forbidden glass object d’art. The Poet finally gets mad, kicks them out and boards up His study, because that is a rational reaction.

The house is empty again. They fight, they have makeup sex, she wakes up the next morning and says she’s pregnant. Uh, okay Miss First Response.

The Husband is so inspired by what he said about the dead son he writes a new book. Best thing ever, says Wife. She putters around house looking silvery and lovely in the Gwyneth Paltrow maternity collection available at goop dot com.

She sets up a baby crib and tiny clothes and washcloths in the former guest room. There is an out-out-damn-blood-spot under the rug. Nothing to worry about.

Then the landline in the kitchen rings (actually the second weirdest thing to happen in this movie) and it’s the Poet’s agent. She loves the new Words and can’t wait to do the book tour. The Wife is crestfallen because this means The Poet showed someone else his new work first. She’s always been his biggest support, so this is a betrayal that stings.

It’s night. To celebrate, Wife puts on a smokey eye makeup, styles her wig in an Oscar-appropriate chignon, and wears a goddess gown made out of a heavy-handed symbolism and silk blend. She’s prepared a feast for a multitude for two. Dinner’s ready, dear!

People at the door. The Poet loves the attention. Jut one minute, darling.

Agent arrives. (It’s Kristen Wiig!) Let’s set up the Book signing in the dining room. This won’t take long, dear.

In the kitchen, the people touch things, eat things, break things. Men openly hit on the Wife-Mother, then call her names when she rebuffs them. In every room there is chaos, an invasion of thoughtless and destructive uninvited guests. A couple sits, sits, sits on the unbraced sink.

The sink falls, the pipes burst, She screams, the house pulses. Guests are painting the rooms. Tableaux of religious symbolism happen as the wife runs from room to room.

Parades, holy days, holy wars, ceremonies, wars, feasts, genocide, women held in cages by Eastern-European pimps from the movie Taken. Civilizations rise and fall in the parlor. Purges occur in the dining room. Kristen Wiig has the best deadpan line in a movie ever.

The Husband and Wife escape to the study, a sanctum. Wife gives birth. It’s a boy. (Keep up now.)

Husband-Father wants to show the Son to their awesome house guests, because that’s a good idea. Wife-Mother says are you actually kidding me right now? Husband drags over a big overstuffed chair from the John the Baptist collection at Ethan Allen and they stare at each other for days.

mother! nurses the baby and wraps him in swaddling clothes courtesy of Jessica Alba’s Nativity Collection.

When she falls asleep, (on the third day?) father! snatches up the baby! and runs downstairs to present his son to the people! Things have only gone more downhill downstairs. Yes, more.

The baby is grabbed (by now it’s a CGI baby; keep reminding yourself it’s a CGI baby. When you wake at night, tell the thing at the foot of your bed, “you’re just a CGI baby.”)and stress-pees everywhere as it is passed overhead. (Same, CGI baby. This will get you banned at Bonaroo.)

Then, dear readers, they eat that freaking CGI baby. They. Eat. The. Baby. While I’m sure it becomes for them the bread of allegory, it sends mother! over the edge.

She screams, the house pulses. She is knocked to the ground by the crowd, her top is unsexily ripped off, and she is close-up beaten in the face over and over while the crowd screams obscenities at her.

She rises, grabs the lighter she hid earlier and races downstairs to the basement. There’s been stuff with the floorboards bleeding and crumbling before this. The blood revealed a hidden door. Behind the door is a tank of heating oil. She smashes the tank and lights the oil on fire as He tries to stop her. A ball of fire engulfs the house and everyone in it. She burns, like the opening scene.

The Husband is untouched by the fire. He carries Her through what’s left of the house. She asks, “who are you?”

He answers, “I? I am some ridiculous answer I rage-blocked life? the Word? the Light?” IDK, I was pretty mad he didn’t get blasted too. Then He says, “And you? You are Home.” Blech.

He puts her on the floor in his study. She says, “You didn’t love me, you only loved how much I loved you.”

He’s all yeah, so long and thanks for all the fish. That part is not verbatim.

She beautifully dies and crumbles to ash after he manually reaches into her chest cavity, pulls out her heart, and gets another glowing glass knickknack out of it.

She blows away into nothing and He puts his decorative item back on the shelf.

There is a new dawn. The house and woods around it are restored. The bed rises from ashes with a female figure in it. Same shape, same Nordstom organic linen nightgown, same wig.

Woman rolls over–a different woman, but she calls out to her Husband with the same voice.

Roll the end credits to a slow version of 60s Skeeter Davis song The End of the World covered by Patti Smith.

TL:DR: He’s God, she’s either Mrs. God or Mother Earth. People ruin paradise, despoil Mother-God, and literally eat their only begotten son. She wipes everything out, but God starts the cycle again.
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I bought tickets to a special pre-screening of the new Jennifer Lawrence movie “mother!” This is a spoiler-free mother movie review. I’ll write a full mother! movie spoiler post and link it here later today.

Mother movie review.

First let me establish my movie bona fides. It might help you decide if you want to see the new movie mother! by Darren Aronofsky starring Jennifer Lawrence and Javier Bardem.

I’m not a movie snob, but I do prefer movies you have to think about. I love Star Wars and Marvel movies, but I don’t much care for comedies with a lot of gross body humor. Any character on a toilet played for laughs is not my thing.

I watch a lot of old, classic films. I have seen almost every Alfred Hitchcock movie, including most of his silent films and early talkies. I love European films. I don’t mind films without a traditional narrative arc and without a happy ending, i.e., Swedish films.

One thing I’m not fond of in films is allegory. I was all excited to see the Tom Hiddleston movie last year called High-Rise. It’s set in an English apartment development in the 1970s. The clip I first saw looked like it might be stylish science fiction. Nope.

I can’t recall at what point in the High-Rise when things went totally bonkers and I clued into the fact that now I was watching an allegory for Thatcherism. I haven’t been that disappointed in Tom Hiddleston since he wore an “I heart Taylor Swift” t-shirt.

Before seeing mother! last night I’d only seen two movie posters for it that seemed full of religious symbolism, read a blurb about how a married couple have uninvited guests that cause problems, and seen a trailer mostly featuring Jennifer Lawrence in an ash blond lacefront redecorating a Pottery Barn.

This in no way prepared me for the actual movie.

In a way I really appreciate that the trailer doesn’t give away anything past the first thirty minutes or so of the film. The biggest giveaway is that Ed Harris, the Man in Black from Westworld, and Michelle Pfeiffer, a sexy old Cat Lady, are really bad, horny house guests.

Is this movie horror? Is it sci-fi? Are there demons or witches or (scariest of all) senators. Nope. Nopety nope nope.

This trailer shows a tiny bit of the larger scope of the movie.

While mother! gets raw and violent and bloody and so screamy I want to send Jennifer Lawrence a basket of lozenges and a cold compress, it’s not a classic horror movie in that it is not a haunted house and there are no magical or supernatural creatures, per se.

Still, people laughed when they figured out what was going on, gasped when it really cranked up, and even screamed at one point. There is a scene so shocking (two parts of it, I thought) that I could tell some of the other audience members were angry. At the end of the film, people either walked out right away, or stumbled out slightly dazed.

As I walked out past the waitstaff who were in and out serving food during the screening, they said, “Intense, right? Wasn’t that something?” I lingered in the lobby for a few minutes talking to others, sharing the experience. Other groups waited out on the sidewalk talking about what we’d just seen. The viewers who’d seemed angry had not lingered.

Much like The Passion of the Christ, The Passion, Pulp Fiction, Antichrist, and Nymphomanic, this will be a polarizing film. You will love it or hate it, no in between. Mother! is either wow! or wtf!

See it first. It would take a very special young adult to be able to appreciate it. I took my 17-year-old daughter and I wish I’d pre-screened it first.

In my defense, I thought it was going to be a modern Rosemary’s Baby. I’m not totally happy she has some of that in her head. Frankly, as an audience member I would not want to look around and see kids in the audience.

There is no way to talk about the movie and not spoil the experience for you. If you think you want to see it, go in blind and just relax into it. There are no jump scares or clowns, if that helps.

Okay, here are some potential spoilers. mother! has (highlight to read) strong language, graphic violence, partial and very unsexy nudity, burning flesh, old people humping discreetly, fratricide, blood, a naked old man in a bathtub, and brief, shocking, allegorical cannibalism, and Kristen Wiig.
Want more? Read my full mother! movie spoiler here.
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Isn’t it interesting how the time you spend in the sun, your smoking habits, and even your diet come back to haunt your skin years later? Sadly, the delicate skin around the eyes is usually the first place to betray age. This is especially true since aging itself reduces the speed at which cells repair. So, carefully choose anti-aging ingredients when shopping for the best under eye creams to combat wrinkles, dark spots, and eye puffiness.

Here are some of our favorite eye creams selected for their active ingredients. Make sure to select a product based on ingredients in it proven to actually work. Don’t just pay for fancy packaging and expensive advertising. The best under eye cream isn’t necessarily the most expensive one.

Don’t buy snake oil! (Unless snake oil works on wrinkles. Because in that case, I would totally buy it.)

Please note that links may be affiliate links. If you click and buy, we get a small percentage of what you would pay anyway.
The best anti-aging eye creams for wrinkles, aging, and dark circles. Beauty and skin care for women over 50. Save

This award-winning eye cream offers to improve the skin around your eyes and keep it glowing. Dr. Brandt’s Xtend Your Youth eye cream is made to keep the eye area hydrated and moist, and is gentle enough not to cause irritation. This treatment claims to revitalize your eyes and give you a more youthful appearance.

This eye cream is light, refreshing, and potentially the perfect product to relieve the tiredness around your eyes. Just a small quantity around the outer contours of your eyes and under eyes is enough to reduce wrinkles and fine lines.

Key ingredients are a blend of three antioxidents: green tea, white tea, and grape seed antioxidant. It also contains red rose wine for additional antioxidant protection, and vitamin C to diminish the look of lines and wrinkles.

This combo eye cream reduces both lines around the eyes and dark spots and also illuminates the eye contour. Reviews for Vichy Idealia Eyes call it a fantastic product for treating poor circulation and for refreshing the area around the eyes.

It contains caffeine to reduce puffiness, vitamin C to enrich skin with antioxidants, and is packaged with a silicone applicator for easy application. Citric acid, shea butter, and silica are the active ingredients in this cream which make it suitable for both brightening shadows and also serving as a make-up base.

Like many eye creams, this smooths the skin under the eyes, removes the puffy and baggy areas, and claims to give you an entirely youthful and relaxed look. It contains caffeine, lavender essential oil, dimethicone, and glycerin.

The best time to use Garnier’s SkinActive Miracle Anti-Fatigue Eye Gel Cream is at night. Carefully apply it under your eyes, ensuring that you blend it finely. It relieves the look of fatigue while you sleep.

Clinically tested for erasing dark circles around the eyes, Remescar’s Eye Bags and Dark Circles cream claims instant results.

The presence of a bi-peptide complex and clay minerals helps to tighten the skin and reduce puffiness around the eyes. Also, it fights the tired look that comes with being stressed, i.e., life.

When you wash your face and apply it under your eyes once a day, take the time to gently pat it in properly so that it can blend into your skin. It also contains sodium silicate and shea butter glycerides, which are key ingredients in the cream.

The ingredients in this eye gel fight the hell out of free radicals. Appropriate for any skin type, it protects the area around the eyes and eliminates sagging which is common in many women over 50.

Since it contains serum, AOX+ Eye Gel absorbs easily into the skin. Apply the product in the morning, avoiding getting too close to your eyes. Active ingredients include caffeine, vitamin C, ferulic acid, and sodium hydroxide. These ingredients all contribute to maintaining younger and fresher-looking skin.

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With any of these under eye creams you can fight many of the surface signs of fatigue and aging. Remember, age is just a number! By using the best under eye creams you can feel beautiful at any age.

Looking for more beauty products for women over 40 and 50? Read one woman’s review of Bobbi Brown cosmetics.
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Find your perfect summer beach read here and then stop by her blog to see what else she recommends.

Looking for the Perfect Beach Read?

When you plan your summer vacation you need to know what books are the best summer beach reads.

Because at the pool you'll want to immediately jump into a book when you get there (after generously applying sun screen, of course).

These new releases will get you through your typical summer reading slump.

There are affiliate links provided throughout this article to help you grab a copy quickly and support Midlife Boulevard in the process. Thank you.

5 Required Summer Reads

Anything Is Possible, Elizabeth Strout

Elizabeth Strout's latest is filled with familial connections and struggling relationships.

A book of short stories pulls together character after character. It draws you in in such a way you'll find yourself unable to put this book down. But what I think is great about it is that you can.

I love when books give you a moment to breathe - and Strout does that here with a shift from story to story. Anything Is Possible is a must read this summer. Read this one before everyone else does to avoid spoilers.

Into The Water, Paula Hawkins

Fans of The Girl On The Train can't wait to get their hands on Hawkins' new release. And it does not disappoint.

Told from the perspective of a number of characters, it's the story of a woman found at the bottom of the town river. You'll guess at the turn of every page. Want a new psychological thriller to dive into? This is it.

One Perfect Lie, Lisa Scottoline

Lisa Scottoline has recently become one of my favorite authors. It's not that she's a new writer, it's that I'm new to her work. Her back-catalog is full of titles I can't wait to dig in to.

One Perfect Lie has the perfect setting, the perfect community, and, quite possibly, the perfect lie. This suburban town has no idea what's happening within it. And neither do we. But I can't wait to find out!

The Forever Summer, Jamie Brenner

I love a great beach read, and The Forever Summer is just that. Just look at the cover! I can't be the only one who wants that hat, right?

A story of generations, family dynamics, connections, secrets and more - set against the New England coast? This book is going to absolutely be the perfect beach read. Described as a 'delicious page-turner' I'm more than ready to grab my copy.

In This Moment, Karma Brown

Karma Brown quickly became one of my favorite authors with her first book, Come Away With Me.

She knows just how to write characters filled with emotion, how to tell a tale that will take your breath away as you turn each page. Brown is a fascinating storyteller with characters you feel you know and identify with.

I feel that In This Moment will be one of everyone's favorite summer reads.

So, there you have it - a handful of books you'll simply have to pick up as Mother Nature turns up the heat! Looking for more? Check out my post on 14 Beach Reads You'll Dive Right Into This Summer.
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Ten ways to dress longer and leaner. Look ten pounds lighter if you shop after you read this.
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Is There Life After Parenting?

Read more life after parenting from Christine Field on her site, RealMomLife.

Like many moms, I gave my ALL to mothering. All my energy and creativity. Mothering grew and shaped me in ways I could not have imagined.

But time, toddlers, and teens have marched on. The days of up-to-my-elbows mothering have drawn to a close.

I did not easily transition into a season of new interests and pursuits. It has been filled with stops and starts, wrong turns and rerouting.

The transition turned out to be a process of looking ahead and dreaming dreams, looking back and recapturing passion, and looking around to explore new frontiers.

Looking Ahead to Life After Children

Clarity began to emerge when I took time to examine what interests and passions have lain dormant while I invested in the sacred calling of motherhood. As I mulled these matters, I found myself giddy with anticipation!

Why? This is the time when I can focus on myself, without guilt or hesitation, without needy little people pulling at my shirt or asking to borrow the car keys. It is the time to unpack and reignite my passions and fuel my mojo.

What about you? Has it been a while since you felt enthusiasm? Indeed, are you trying to identify what lights you up?

When you were younger you were probably curious about a hundred things, some of which matured into passions. Maybe you loved a film so much that you had to watch it every single day. Maybe you loved an author so much that you read everything they wrote. Or maybe you were fascinated with dinosaurs and were sure you were going to become an archeologist?

So how do you reconnect to those old passions you once had? How do you reignite yourself?

Living the un-ignited life is like being ready to cook a gourmet meal while the pilot light on the stove is off. You know what you need to do.

Looking Back to Rediscover Passions

One of the best ways to find out what you are passionate about today is to think about what you used to be passionate about.

In other words, what didja usta do?

When you were younger you probably wanted to be an astronaut or a princess, or both, and it’s only as we get older that we are told to find something more “adult” to be interested in.

For me, it was writing and music. I had urges to express myself that could not be silenced. Then I realized that the life of an artist was more struggle than I was willing to endure. So I went to law school. Go figure.

But just because we’ve been forced to bury those old interests, that doesn’t mean they aren’t there still bubbling (perhaps boiling!) under the surface.

And just because you might not realistically become an astronaut, that doesn’t mean you can’t still chase a passion for space, or for travel, or for new horizons in studying the cosmos– whatever it was that originally drove you to feel so strongly.

Spend some time thinking about what you’ve lost touch with. What was it that once captured your interest and imagination? What didja usta do? How did that make you feel?

Looking Around For New Passions

Sometimes you will find that you have lost interest in the things that once were so amazing to you. If that’s the case, no worries. I lost my ambition to be a flute player with the Chicago Symphony, but I never lost my love of words.

There is nothing wrong with finding new things to be passionate about. Or, you could also try adding a new spin to an old passion. For instance, while I once fancied myself as a broody Irish fiction author, I now joyously write non-fiction articles and books.

Rediscovering old passions is about respect for the past, but it’s also about growth and development and not forcing a square peg back into an old, round hole.

(When I was a sophomore in high school, one of my teachers wrote in my autograph book that I WAS a square peg in a round hole. At the time, I thought it a bit off-putting. Now I rejoice in it!)

Moving Forward Once You Have an Empty Nest

So, where are you at?

Are you willing to take a little look back to see life after parenting?

What didja usta do?

Pay attention to how you feel when you think about those things. Do they light you up and make you feel excited? You’re on the right track.

What if you look back and conclude – meh, as the kids say. Nothing quite grabs you. That means you need to create some new experiences to try on some NEW pursuits and talents. The world is so full of wonderful things that you WILL trip across something delightful.

It’s your time. What will you do with it?

It’s time to reignite mom!
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