Jacob Richardson | 8/02/2019
Undeniably confronting, strange and unpredictable, ultimately The Lighthouse will stay with you for days, weeks, and potentially longer - worming its way into your brain.
Thomas Howard (Robert Pattinson) is a young lighthouse keeper, doing his first stint at a remote lighthouse on a barren island. He joins experienced hand Thomas Wake (Willem Dafoe), who has worked this same lighthouse for years. Together, they try and stay sane for their fortnight of solitude with one another; joined only by an immense number of seagulls, and the allure of that shining light.
Robert Eggers delivers a black and white, square ratio, shot on film mood piece that is weird, wacky, and wonderful. This two hander relies very heavily on the strength of its two leads, and Pattinson and Dafoe bring their A-game. Whether they are masturbating in the shadows to bone-carved images of mermaids, smashing seagulls violently against rocks, downing bottle after bottle of clear alcohol, fighting or verging on making out with one another, Pattinson and Dafoe feel 100% ~ in it ~.
Eggers paces the film extremely well. You never drop out of intrigue with the project. It’s a certain sense of drama that keeps you hooked for the duration, no matter how weird or wild things get.
And boy do they get weird and wild.
This isn’t the sort of film where you can predict what is going to happen, how it’s going to go down, or where you’ll end up. It’s also not the sort of film you’ll want to revisit soon after, or indeed ever again. But it IS an experience, and one you should have, going into with as few expectations as possible. The Lighthouse is a microcosmic exploration of madness, and never fails to thrill, intrigue, and engage, even as it struggles as hard as possible to repulse.
The Lighthouse is weird af. But also, definitely worth your time.