Lamb ★★½

Night #18 of Hooptober VIII.

Now that theaters are opened back up and becoming a regular part of my life again, so returns the frustrations of my local theater playing trailers for a films they aren't actually intending to show. And the bonus disappointments of driving an hour away to see said films, only for them to be...not very good.

Lamb is a pretty movie; they had an incredible location for it, and they show it off. The effects on the titular lamb are fine, not the best sometimes, but nothing that took me out of it really. The performances are also good, though such substantial portions of the film are without dialogue (and quite frankly, too substantial a portion is just b-roll) that it's hard for me to say I was very compelled by them, even during those few truly tender moments that the film needed to sell all the metaphors in its inventory.

Parenthood, loss, grief, nature, nurture, the selfishness of man, and our impact on the natural world. These things are in there, I can see them, but I do not believe they're conveyed with gravity they require; instead they're set dressing for a languid stroll through the Icelandic countryside. While marketed for its horror elements (which I took with a grain of salt going in, frankly, thankfully) I wouldn't suggest expecting that here. Outside of the opening sequence planting the seed that "something" is going to happen eventually, most of the film's tension is simply conveyed through ominous sounds over moody landscapes. The finale comes on abruptly, and...comically? A bold, but probably misguided effect that got a few laughs out of the small audience. The vacuous ending wants to say a lot, but fumbles it in the void it's created for itself.

I can't recall the last time I've struggled so hard to stay awake at two in the afternoon.

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