Aronofsky is not coy about it, from the title (with its "!") down to the very first word of the movie ("Baby?"). But despite how you feel about the schlocky, painfully palpable script (the closest thing I can think of is of how obvious The Matrix script is), he does accomplish the attack effectively.
Jennifer Lawrence plays the "mother" of the title, and the movie is tight on her. Besides a few wide shots, every single shot is a close-up of her, a POV shot, or a shot from over her shoulder. In fact, Mother! is on Lawrence as a close-up for 66 minutes of the film's 122 minute run time. The camera is also very indicative of her mood. During one of the early sequences, we get a tight extreme closeup shot of her face, intimately warm. At a rebuff from her husband, the camera immediately pulls back, making us feel that distance.
The movie opens on what seems an idyllic situation -- she is married to an older poet and lovingly restoring the home that they share together. Their situation is disturbed when a strange man shows up at their door and invited in. What follows at first is a stressful drama that unfolds like a domestic Harold Pinter and escalates into something more.
Aronofsky is a master at this sort of escalation. In everything from Requiem for a Dream to Black Swan, he is able to perfectly needle into your skin with disquieting notes before things build in a crescendo to a horrifying pitch. If Mother! becomes too much, as it may in its Hieronymous Bosch-like sequences, it's because Aronofsky wants very precisely to take you there.
Javier Bardem and Lawrence do well in their roles, but they're not given much nuance. However, I doubt Aronofsky wants them to have much complexity within the context of his story. Lawrence is all glow and incandescence, like a Renaissance Madonna, while Bardem is more like an etched Goya. As impressive as Lawrence's physical and emotional range is, she is clearly a passive entity here, someone who can only react to what is going on around her.
Although Mother! has clearly been polarizing, I can't imagine Aronofsky being any more pleased with it. As a piece of visual cinema, it is certainly compelling. At the very least it is stressful, disturbing, and pretentious. At the most, it's exactly what Aronofsky wanted to accomplish with the film, and a conversation piece to boot. It's interesting that Lawrence insists on explaining the allegory to everyone, even to the point of sitting her family down for the movie and explicating every factor piece by piece while Aronofsky chooses to remain quiet on the subject. However, perhaps that is because he believes that everything that he needs to say is within the folds of his film.