Early 18th century England is at war with the French. Nevertheless, duck racing and pineapple eating are thriving. A frail Queen Anne (Olivia Colman) occupies the throne and her close friend Lady Sarah (Rachel Weisz) governs the country in her stead while tending to Anne’s ill health and mercurial temper. When a new servant Abigail (Emma Stone) arrives, her charm endears her to Sarah. Sarah takes Abigail under her wing and Abigail sees a chance at return to her aristocratic roots. As the politics of war become quite time consuming for Sarah, Abigail steps into the breach to fill in as the Queen’s companion. Their burgeoning friendship gives her a chance to fulfil her ambitions and she will not let woman, man, politics or rabbit stand in her way.
“He’s perhaps the last director one would expect to find working on a period costume drama featuring real historical figures. But The Favourite gratifyingly proves that Lanthimos can put his mordantly idiosyncratic stamp on even this staidest of genres.” – Sight & Sound
“[Lanthimos] sets aside his taste for the surreal social parable to articulate a modernist approach to costume drama: a turn from fantasy to history in which the usual quietism and monotony of the acting is replaed by an expressive tragicomic modulation (elevated to pure virtuosity by Olivia Colman as England’s Queen Anne).” – Film Comment
“Shooting a lot of this flawlessly period film on 6mm fisheye lenses, Yorgos found a way, that doesn’t feel like a “way” at all, to shoot this austere story with stinging freshness. To call it “modern” is obvious, but the awesome paradox here is that it feels both hyper-modern and absolutely period at the same time. It is camera obscura, realized. It’s Vermeer moving”
- 1/3 | 10:00PM