Not a Firm Favourite: A Review
You can't watch Yargos Lanthimos' new film without having some pre-conceptions.
It seems like The Favourite came out of nowhere; pre-awards season buzz was fuelled by the bright light of A Star is Born and, in my opinion, rightly so because who knew Lady Gaga was such a skilled actress and that Bradley Cooper could sing and direct like that?
However, The Favourite held firm and secured a plethora of awards and nominations, particularly for Olivia Coleman, who took home the Golden Globe for Best Actress in a Musical or Comedy and the Volpi Cup for Best Actress. The film is predicted to do well at the Oscars, with nominations for Best Actress, Best Supporting Actress, Best Director and Best Picture.
So, is it any good?
That's not to say that the acting is bad- if anything it is phenomenal and Coleman deserves her awards/nominations, however, the film isn't very cohesive.
I understand that it's meant to be a dark comedy and there are moments, like the duck racing, that are hilarious the film still feels underwhelming. It never meets its full potential as a story. Perhaps it's because of the awards buzz that Lanthimos' work is tainted, but I just didn't really understand the rave reviews.
Leaving the cinema I burst out laughing because what I had seen was so absurd and not in a clever way. The actresses did a brilliant job of illustrating the manipulation and ruthlessness surrounding Queen Anne and her favourites- though much of what we see isn't historically accurate.
There was just no story and as a piece of art, it wasn't very moving. Other Oscar nominees like A Star is Born and Bohemian Rhapsody made me cry and laugh, each having an innate sense of self. While The Favourite seems lost in its ever-changing cinematography and fails to develop a real plot.
I'm not sure what I was supposed to feel or take away from this film, though I do know that it is underwhelming. Please don't think that this is a terrible movie because it isn't, the point I'm trying to make is that it isn't as good as everyone's saying it is. So, if you're going to the cinema just to see what the fuss is about, don't. See a film with a more solid sense of self instead.
If you want to watch a Monarch-centric film, Mary Queen of Scots might be a better fit.
[Photo Credits: By Ibsan73, CC BY 2.0.]