The Favourite Review: The undisputed favorite that you can’t miss out on
Director Yorgos Lanthimos has carefully crafted an amazingly hilarious film filled with tension, crude humor, and fantastic performances that you have to see as fast as humanly possible.
The film follows a frail Queen Anne of England (Olivia Colman) as she constantly suffers from illness and the crude remarks of other members of the court. Queen Anne only really has one close friend, Lady Sarah (Rachel Weisz), who not only helps her with daily tasks, but also helps her make political decisions. Things change, though, once Sarah’s cousin Abigail (Emma Stone) comes to the palace and steals the attention of Queen Anne. Now the two are stuck in a battle to be the queen’s favorite as secrets, feelings, and plenty of lewd jokes spill out into the English court.
Those just seeing a trailer or hearing about The Favourite would probably be turned away as it can be seen as just another period piece without any well-known figure or character to be tied to it. However, Lanthimos makes The Favourite something so much more as the more provocative story and humor makes the film something that anyone can enjoy. The more sexual and foul-mouth humor is something that feels completely fresh and fits with each of the characters actions.
With these crude jokes, comes some excellent line delivery as all of the performances from the leading ladies are all amazing. Colman is brilliant as Queen Anne and showcases her deep emotional dread from a lack of a family or friends and her joy of the jealousy that comes from Sarah excellently. Stone also puts in a solid performance and displays Abigail’s growth from being a worthless worker to a prominent lady of the Kingdom perfectly.
Weisz is the true favorite for me, though, as she brings a strong and dominant personality to the film and anytime she is on-screen verbally competing against anyone she is the clear favorite. There is always a vicious sense of wit behind every insult and line delivered by Weisz that is both deliciously evil and heartbreakingly emotional. It’s a performance that makes her the clear frontrunner for any and every award possible.
There is also an excellent performance from Nicholas Hoult as the dastardly Harley. While adding in some digs and jokes of his own, his performance offers an interesting twist for the story and a minor antagonist that is just plain fun to watch.
While the film has its funny moments, Lanthimos also does an excellent job with building tension and using long, drawn out shots with little speaking and the film’s incredible score to constantly build up drama. The score slowly seeps into each moment only to build up slowly to keep the tension building until it reaches its peak. This score is often accompanied with long walking shots that to the overall tension.
The Favourite is an indisputable favorite of the year and all of the performances from the film’s leading ladies definitely makes it one to remember. From a first glance, it’s something that a general moviegoer would avoid, but if given the chance, it would probably be one of their favorites too.