The Lighthouse

The Lighthouse

Whoo boy. The Lighthouse. What a film. I've been swamped with work this semester, but I had to make time to see this on what looks like the last day in theaters here. Good thing I did. Two words come to mind.

The first is impressive. This movie is a marvel on several levels.

- The cinematography. The framing. The black and white. The old movie aesthetic. Just breathtaking.

- The detail. The machinery. The creaky, dilapidated shacks. The language. All the little juicy ingredients that made this such a treat to devour.

- The spectacle. The bold choices in storytelling. The mythology and lore oozing out of this salty, succulent tale. And those performances. Good god those performances. Pattinson and Dafoe were electric together. So raw. So revealing. Eggers pulled some kind of animal out of these two lads.

Finally, for the second word: crazy. I mean, I had heard how strange this movie is beforehand, but I don't think anything short of straight-up spoilers could have prepared me for it. Allow me to quote the song "Where Is My Mind?" by Pixies to illustrate it better:

Where is my mind?
Where is my mind?
Where is my mind?
Way out in the water
See it swimmin'

That about sums it up.

This film earns its trip down the rabbit hole. Thematic elements are established early and repeated often, peeling away a layer of sanity with each return to the lodge, the lighthouse, the siren, and the shore. By the time we're visiting each location on the island for the last time, the progression to bat-shit craziness feels believable - as if that's the only logical conclusion this film could draw, bizarre as it may be. That is so difficult to pull off, but somehow these crazy bastards did it.

So glad I saw this in theaters. I was captivated, shocked, disgusted, enchanted, and, above all, entertained. If that isn't the definition of a cinematic experience, I don't know what is.

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