I loved The Witch when I first saw it. It was legitimately such a uniquely entertaining horror film where so much went on on the screen and you could feel expert film-making in the subject matter and the attention to detail. For this reason I was very excited to see the next effort from Robert Eggers and it looked like an absolute mad one from the trailer. After watching, the film certainly is madness although I can’t help but feel that my expectations were way higher than what I felt after watching the film.
The film is about two lighthouse keepers on duty in isolation. The two are initially at odds with each other with a boss-employee relationship with a lot of hostility. Soon both men realize the effects of their loneliness in the isolation and descend into madness and terror with each passing day. Reality becomes blurred and emotions and violence flares. There are very few actors in this film and it is primarily comprised of Willem Defoe and Robert Pattinson.
The film is shot entirely in black and white and the aspect ratio is 1.19:1. The film looks and feels like something from the past. The film could have easily been made in the 50s or 60s, it absolutely looks the part. The sound effects and editing on the phone are stellar. Every crashing wave, siren, and moment of terror is heard precisely. The acting is also tremendous from both men. I have no worries at all about Robert Pattinson playing Batman. Between Good Time and now The Lighthouse, I already know that he is a very talented man.
This film once against offers unforgettable and unnerving imagery much like The Witch. Its a craft in technical film making although I felt like the film dragged in its narrative. A lot felt like rambling (though very well presented) and I feel like other segments feel incoherent and garbled. Its a good film no doubt but after The Witch I was expecting to absolutely love this film. Still its a good effort from a film maker with a wealth of talent.