The Favourite is the new film directed by Yorgos Lanthimos and written by Deborah Davis and Tony McNamara. The film, along with Rome, holds the Oscar nomination record of this year with ten nominations, including Best Picture, Direction, Original Screenplay, Leading and Supporting Actress. Here is the review without spoilers.
The film follows the story of the struggle between Abigail Masham and Sarah Churchill to be Queen Anne’s Favorite. Despite being historical, it takes many liberties, thus combining fiction and reality. But this, in my opinion, is just one of its strengths.
The Favourite is a beautiful film, fun, exciting and visually beautiful. Another center for Lanthimos. But let us proceed step by step.
The screenplay of The Favourite is really well written. All the characters are very deep and well built, the dialogues have a mixture of realism and classic book of the ‘700, the situations are well built, giving each one the time to be able to evolve and, finally, the topics are treated very well.
The Favourite sees as protagonists three women very different from each other, but all connected to power. Queen Anne, who is presented in a very unusual way: weak, delicate and easily malleable. Sarah, a very clever court lady, who was able to enter the Queen’s graces and use their bond to control her. Abigail, a lady who has lost everything, but who does not give up and tries to reacquire what she lost.
Well-defined and never static characters. In The Favourite is difficult to understand the characters, because they evolve and only at the end of the film we fully understand them. Three women who serve to give a clear emancipatory message, as all three have, in a different way, more power than men.
Another theme of the film is the superior good and what one is willing to do to obtain it. Several characters have different ideas about what this fantastical superior good is, but it will be a female character to carry out her idea with force, while a masculine character will do it with cowardice and deception.
And finally, as in almost every historical film, there is the theme of the court and of the relationships that are formed within it: games of power, sex, betrayals, deceits, people who think only of their interest, to the personal good, ignoring the common one.
And The Favourite manages to do all this without losing its touch of comedy. In fact, the film is a lot of fun and it makes you laugh, and the writers have been good at dropping this comedy in the actions of the protagonists and not in their words. thus avoiding tasteless jokes that would not have made people laugh. There are some ridiculous scenes, and that’s the beauty, because we’re all ridiculous, from the shoemaker to the queen.
Yorgos Lanthimos, greek director famous for The Lobster and The Killing of the Sacred Deer, is the director of The Favourite. His shots, his camera movements are definitely recognizable and, of course, aesthetically perfect.
The Favourite is just beautiful to see, a real orgasm for the eyes. The shots are often beautiful wide, even indoors, the movements very fluid, there are moments when you have a vision to the “crystal ball”, typical of Lanthimos, A direction that has sought much the obstruction of the image and the has just studied ad hoc. There are strange, atypical angles, but that turned out to be right. Certainly less strange than other Lanthimos films, but still visually valid.
Another positive note of the film is the technical department. The Favourite is proof that even if you spend a little money – the film has cost only fifteen million dollars – you can have a very good technical department. An amazing cinematography, colored when it should and obscures; superb scenography, great costumes of the three times Oscar winner Sandy Powell, beautiful editing and beautiful music.
And finally, a fantastic cast, especially for the three women. Olivia Colman is very funny and sweet in the role of Queen Anne, Rachel Weisz was fantastic as well as Emma Stone, who had, in my opinion, the most complex character of the three.
The Favourite is a perfect, fun, deep and stylistically perfect movie. A real must for cinema fans and more. Go see it.
The review ends here, but now it’s your turn. Have you seen The Favourite? What do you think? Will you go see it? Is this film your favourite at the Oscars? Tell me everything in the comments section. I thank you for reading, if you liked the review, share it and follow me, or on twitter or on facebook, to stay tuned. Thanks a lot.