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Posts Tagged ‘Robert Eggers’

Willem Dafoe, Robert Pattinson

“THE LIGHTHOUSE” My rating: B

109 minutes | MPAA rating: R

With Robert Eggers’ “The Lighthouse” we don’t so much watch a couple of men go crazy as experience that craziness with them.

The film has been beautifully photographed, but beware…it is disconcerting, perplexing  and alienating. Eggers, who burst upon the scene a couple of years back with “The Witch,”  is less interested in solving mysteries than in creating visual and aural conundrums. We’re expected to come up with our own answers.

At the turn of the last century two men — the salty old Thomas Wake (Willem Dafoe) and the much younger Ephraim Winslow (Robert Pattinson) — take up their duties at a lighthouse on a remote island somewhere off the American coast. They are to be relieved in four weeks.

There’s friction from the start.  The experienced and dictatorial Thomas gives his newcomer partner the lousiest housekeeping jobs: cleaning out the cistern, emptying overflowing chamber pots, whitewashing the lighthouse while dangling in a harness, stoking the furnace that creates the steam to power the deafening foghorn. The old man claims the light itself as his special concern;  Ephraim is steer clear of the tower unless specifically ordered to climb those winding stairs.

This is bad enough. But Thomas is an irritating old coot, a monumental farter and snorer who insists on telling boring tall tales of sea life in a Long John Silver voice.

Ephraim has his own issues. He refuses to drink with Thomas…it seems likely that he is an alcoholic whose misbehavior on the mainland has led to a self-imposed exile.

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