The Favourite

gave myself a headache thinking about how form fits content—the overindulgent, overly saturated decadence of this (as a film) is a marvel to look at, but also directly in conversation with the political games being played by the utmost elite (in the film). watching Abigail, Sarah, and the Queen dance circles around each other is thrilling: they're sensual, seductive, scheming every word, each touch. there's ducks being raced for fun, fruit being thrown at naked men, and no one knows how much of this is for pleasure, for power, for art, for beauty, for farce. yet there's a literal WAR being waged beyond the beautiful walls of the court. lives are on the line, Sarah's husband's included. whatever stakes are being constructed inside the court are merely that: constructed, self-made issues of importance, of desire, of control. how empty is this, really, if we are to look past the grandness? the chess game being played here has a body count.

there's not to say, though, there isn't still pain in the castle. Coleman makes tragedy uncanny: all of the loss she's experienced registers, but the way she moves between deftness and puerility is disorienting. the only person who can read Anne correctly is Sarah, and the only person who is cunning enough to capitalize on Anne's misunderstandings is Abigail. no one can win this game, because no one's made the rules clear, and so everybody's losing and craving the same touch, the same look across a room, a quick, strange dance that means nothing more than that you were chosen above everybody else. you're everybody's favourite, and every body is an enemy.

and still fuck that harpsichord

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