I had made up my mind that this movie would be the proving ground for Robert Pattinson, would nudge me off the fence in one direction or the other. Does he possess the acting abilities necessary to meet his forthcoming challenge, portraying Batman for a new series of movies? After viewing THE LIGHTHOUSE, I can happily pronounce that I am no longer worried. The Bat is in good hands. Pattinson is so good in this film that there were times I forgot completely that I was watching Robert Pattinson. He disappeared into his role. Never for an instant did I think about him sparkling. He has left the career detritus of TWILIGHT far behind him. His costar, Willem Dafoe, is just as good; both men deliver Oscar-worthy performances. Who knows if they’ll receive them, but they deserve them.
I can say of this film the same thing I said of its predecessor, THE WITCH. It is as straightforward as a film can be. There are no twists, no surprises, nothing that the audience doesn’t see coming. Beautiful in its bleakness, THE LIGHTHOUSE is exactly what it presents itself to be: in this case, the story of two men living in complete isolation, with one or both of them—you never know for sure—slowly succumbing to insanity, possibly helped along, or not—again, you never really can say—by the supernatural. Director/co-writer Robert Eggers proves with this one that he is no one-trick pony.
If you thought THE WITCH was boring, then you won’t like this one either. Both employ deliberate, slow-burn pacing and eschew obvious scares. This is a movie for the literate Horror fan, the true connoisseur. It satisfies the refined palate. If you have a taste for this sort of rarefied dish, dig in. No seasoning necessary.