From the director of The Witch, Robert Eggers, comes The Lighthouse, a dark psychological thriller that follows two lighthouse keepers living on a remote island in New England in the 1890s.
Filmed in black and white, the story plays out against crashing waves and a stark landscape. Eggers choice of black and white magnifies the film’s intensity by making you feel out of place and adds a layer of bleakness to the movie.
We watch as Willem Defoe and Robert Pattinson work and live as they go on a slow descent into madness which feels so very real.
Pattinson has not received much respect as an actor since his role as a sparkly douche of a vampire in the Twilight franchise, but he complete redeems himself is The Lighthouse proving he has real talent. His portrayal of Thomas, a man who begins to question his reality after living with Defoe’s unstable Thomas Wake, is absolutely incredible. This is coming from a person who had little faith in Pattinson’s ability as an actor up until I pressed play to watch The Lighthouse. I apology for my lack of faith. The man deserves an arm full of awards.
As for Defoe, his brilliance as an actor has long been established. And in The Lighthouse his incredible talent is confirmed. His role as Thomas may be his most twisted role to date. As his weathered character Thomas begins to crack, he makes you question the reality of the film in so many ways that by the end you feel lost, confused, and questioning what is really happening. Bravo.
The film’s score and sounds play a huge part in building a sense of dread in the film. The sound of the waves and the horn of the lighthouse leave you agitated, much like the characters.
The Lighthouse is a brilliant film that drags you into the maelstrom and makes you question if you know what is really happening to the point that by its end, you feel a bit mad yourself. It is no doubt the best example of madness that has been released this year, if not this decade. No, it’s not for everyone and it’s not your average horror film. If you go in expecting that you will be disappointed, but if you go in with an open mind the film will leave you impressed. It’s an intelligent, complex, chaotic, psychological thriller from A24 that receives a 5 out 5 from me.