Essay, Film Review, Preview

Film Review: The Favourite GRADE: A+

Grade: A+

The Favourite is universally loved even though it is a film that is on everyone’s top ten list but didn’t seem to be number one on very often. It is the kind of film that is going to get nominated for an Oscar but not going to win.

It’s a great film and it’s hard to deny it.

The best thing one could say about this film is that it could be nominated in almost every category for the Oscars and be a clear second place. It could hang with any best picture or best director director nominees.

If you’ve watched it, you know both the actress roles, leading and supporting, should have The Favourite on their lists.

The more difficult question is which actress goes in which slots?


This is film that is also in the top ten in cinematography, screenplay and costume design. Best actor is the only place there’s not a clear star.

You will have to believe me that as I wrote the above paragraph it hadn’t registered to me that the academy agreed.

The Favourite led all movies with ten nominations.

All of them deserved.

I don’t know that The Favourite is the best at any of them. It’s just in the mix for all of them. It’s the Mike Trout of movies.

This is a throwback review. This is a film I watched late and almost didn’t write anything about. I had notes but I wasn’t going to type them out.

But the story and performances have stayed with me over the last week and the biggest problem in writing this review/think piece/essay is that there are too many things to write about and I have to get them out.

This is a film that should grab writers of “criticism”, not critics. Today critics are too based around “I liked it” and “I didn’t like it”. I conform to that trap with my grades above, but most of the time I’m a writer and movie goer, like you are, and I’m writing something else.

These are most certainly reviews, but they’re also something else.

The Favourite really…really… tickles that something else bug.

It’s one of those things, we understand make a film great, except that we normally get it from an abstract standpoint. These ideas are fresh in your head as you leave the theater but then life starts and those feelings and questions of having watched a great film fade.

Well you probably watched this months ago and if for some reason you happened upon this essay here is a list of things you were thinking about as you left the theater. It’s also a list of things that there’s some back of the mind hunger I have to continue to write about.

From here on you get your SPOILER WARNING.

If you’re leaving please don’t forget to follow me on twitter @chrissarda and thank you for reading this far.

1) I would like to write a piece tracking the character arcs. Let’s map the story elements to see how the characters played by Rachael Weisz and and Emma Stone switch their protagonist and antagonist roles.

Let’s also talk about the actresses performances in handling the change in the power structure.

2) I am ignorant to the history of this film’s setting. Let’s talk about the rabbits. Let’s talk about their meaning in the film, the symbolism, but also what they represented to Queen Anne. Let’s also talk about their significance, if in any, in history.

3) Let’s talk about lesbianism. Let’s talk about its role and what in the historical records lead us to believe Queen Anne was gay.

4) Let’s also talk about this film and its acceptance in today’s climate versus the climate of a decade or longer ago.

That’s only four things. There are so many more layers to this film. Acting. Writing. Directing. Historical accuracy (its benefits and disadvantages).

So yeah, A+.