Lamb ★★★½

This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

This review may contain spoilers.

“She's not used to strangers.”

Lamb is a 2021 Icelandic horror drama film directed by Valdimar Jóhannsson which follows a childless couple, María and Ingvar who discover a mysterious newborn on their farm in Iceland. The unexpected prospect of family life brings them much joy, before ultimately destroying them.

A24 is certainly a studio that has its own style — most of the films to come from them can be identified as an A24 film, which isn’t a bad thing necessarily, but is definitely not for everyone.

Lamb is no different — it’s pace is brutal and it is far from a conventional horror by any standards.   For the majority of the movie, it plays out like any kind of drama about the pitfalls and joys of motherhood, even if said child is a lamb-human hybrid.

Eventually, the film does reach its point, and the feeling of hollowness it leaves you with doesn’t compare with fright, it’s a dizzying, confounding feeling that could easily be dissatisfaction.

Where the movie’s strength really lies is in the performance by Noomi Rapace, she really anchors the whole thing even during the slow moments and watching her lose everything is upsetting and compelling regardless if the storytelling holds up or not.

Overall, Lamb was an odd beast, one that I think I liked but am reluctant to rate higher, based on its pace and story.  I’d definitely recommend checking it out for yourself, it’s bound to be a divisive one.

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