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The Lighthouse

‘The Lighthouse’ is a different type of horror movie. It isn’t a bloody gore-fest like many, but more of a psychological thriller. There’s nothing more terrifying than the unseen menace of the mind with unpredictability a dangerous thing. Shot in stark black and white and in a small aspect ratio, ‘The Lighthouse’ is a striking experience sure to jangle nerves.

On a foggy islet in 19th century New England, a lighthouse stands as testament to the evils of human nature. Ephraim Winslow (Robert Pattinson) and Thomas Wake (Willem DaFoe) are lighthouse keepers tasked with keeping order. During an unending, bitter squall, cabin fever sets in. Isolation, personal habits and booze soon become a lethal cocktail as the men fight the temptation to descend into unbridled madness.

Co-written and directed by Robert Egger, ‘The Lighthouse’ is intense viewing. Notions of identity, sanity and desire are mixed into a lethal emotional cocktail. Winslow and Wake form an odd partnership with their initial reliance on each other not necessarily a good thing. The complex and consistently interesting screenplay is superbly realised by DaFoe and Pattinson who dive into their roles with enthusiastic gusto.

‘The Lighthouse’ truly shines in its’ technical creativity. Egger is a cinematic craftsman as each atmospheric shot adds to the ongoing tension. His creative choices are on point, making ‘The Lighthouse’ effectively eerie watching. The blending of humour, horror and drama is very well realised with its tonal structure sure to stay with you along with the stunning visuals.

Quite unlike several recent movies around, ‘The Lighthouse’ is definitely unique. It dares you to watch its salty tale with the performances and direction first rate. Given it’s only his 2nd movie after ‘The Witch’, Eggers shows genuine story-telling talent and a fearlessness in pushing the medium to rarely seen but welcome avenues.

Rating out of 10: 9

CURRENTLY AVAILABLE ON DVD AND VARIOUS STREAMING SERVICES.

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