In the last decade, American film distributor A24 has really distinguished itself as a purveyor of artistically interesting releases. Even though they are more or less a corporate umbrella that gets these movies to theater screens, A24 has attached their name to enough bangers that the company has legitimate film hipster fans who will head out to the cinema for every release they put out. 

That’s probably why Lamb was marketed as the most A24-ish movie to ever be released under the A24 banner. The trailer itself had plenty of tropes specific to that branding. As for the movie itself though- it only features the worst stereotypical elements of a film A24 would pick up for distribution. 

Lamb is one of the most tedious exercises in “artistic ambiguity” I’ve ever seen. Not unlike the stunning glacial landscapes of Iceland, where this film is set, Lamb felt like it was moving at a glacier’s pace. It draws out a simplistic concept suited for a short film into a feature-length runtime. There are so many long, static shots that simply add nothing, with boring surface-level character drama lacking the depth it believes it has. 

This is the sort of shallow movie that pretends it has hidden depth by hinting at various thematic allegories without really ever exploring any of them. You could say that I “didn’t get it”, but what theories I’ve seen from more enthusiastic audience members have failed to really piece together the movie in a logical way that doesn’t contradict some other element. And since the movie presents us with so *little* of actual interest it’s not the kind of story that’s even fun to explore intellectually. Instead it’s one to roll your eyes at and never think about again.

With so many movies vying for our time, Lamb needed more substance since it feels like drawn-out and pretentious nonsense relying on A24 tendencies to garner any audience interest. Maybe this one just wasn’t for me, but as somebody who sees pretty much everything that comes out I failed to see why Lamb deserves a spot in filmgoing conversation.

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Alex Merchant liked these reviews