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The Lighthouse

The Lighthouse
Director: Robert Eggers
US 2019110' en

A remote island off the coast of New England in the late 19th century. Two lighthouse keepers, trapped and isolated due to a seemingly never-ending storm, engage in an escalating battle of wills, as tensions boil over and mysterious, mythological forces loom all around them. A bellowing foghorn, stinging wind, and crashing waves of the Atlantic Ocean... “Nothing good can happen when two men are left alone in a giant phallus,” remarks the director.

The second feature film of Robert Eggers (The Witch, 2015) – widely known for his meticulous craft and detail, which is revealed in every scene – is a psychological horror drama. It was shot on black-and-white 35mm film, with the square frame and aspect ratio (1.19:1) favored by early pioneering filmmakers. The film's aesthetics was built through works of literature, painting, music, and historical documentation.

The Lighthouse made its debut at the Directors’ Fortnight of the Cannes Film Festival, earning a best movie honour from the FIPRESCI.

Curator's point of view: The film that restarted the entire auteur cinema/arthouse cinema of 2019. The booming, dark and mystic trip into the subconscious of a New England seadog engages all senses. The film’s pitch black and dank essence almost seeps through the screen – sound, image, rhythm of the language and mythologic textures.