The Lighthouse

The Lighthouse ★★★★★

The first time I watched ‘The Lighthouse’ last year, I commented that although I thought it was undoubtedly a masterpiece, it was still a challenging film to make it through, echoing the experience of the characters with my feelings that I had lost track of time and reality as I watched it. On re-watch, while it certainly remains as effectively harrowing as before, this time I flat out loved every second of it, and found it to be more entertaining then I’d remembered. When Eggers has you under his spell it makes you a bit unhinged yourself, and I found myself in fits of uncontrollable laughter at certain points: the drinking scenes of Thomas and Winslow are hilarious! It’s cliche to say this, but another crucial benefit of this second viewing was to understand more of the film’s intricate details (e.g. I hadn’t realised what those murky looking objects were that arise from the sea as Winslow eases into the water - now I understand a whole new level of the story); it’s so satisfyingly put together that you could study it to death and still only scratch the surface for possible meaning!

Although I’m happy that the Safdies won the Independent Spirit Award for best directing (their chaotic speech putting me in mind of scenes from ‘Uncut Gems’ - it was glorious!), I am sad that ‘The Lighthouse’ has recurved limited awards this season, and only received one Academy Awards nomination - the trophy deservedly went to Roger Deakins so I shouldn’t be that annoyed. Eggers deserves more credit for the extensive research he put in and the outstanding screenplay he put together - the visuals in ‘The Lighthouse’ are extraordinary, but the script and phenomenal performances seal the deal. Back in October I thought Pattinson would have been a shoe-in for a Best Actor Oscar...

Had to give this a rare 5 stars this time round! This’ll be extremely tough to beat as my film of 2020. See previous review for my lengthier ramblings.

PS: That scene when Winslow’s talking to the camera without you real singing, punches through the goddam fourth wall into the gut! It’s fucking terrifying!

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