Coming off a well-received premiere at Venice Film Festival last week Yorgos Lanthimos’ latest feature The Favourite released its first trailer today.
“Early 18th century. England is at war with the French. Nevertheless, duck racing and pineapple eating are thriving. A frail Queen Anne (Olivia Colman) occupies the throne and her close friend Lady Sarah (Rachel Weisz) governs the country in her stead while tending to Anne’s ill health and mercurial temper. When a new servant Abigail (Emma Stone) arrives, her charm endears her to Sarah. Sarah takes Abigail under her wing and Abigail sees a chance at a return to her aristocratic roots. As the politics of war become quite time consuming for Sarah, Abigail steps into the breach to fill in as the Queen’s companion. Their burgeoning friendship gives her a chance to fulfill her ambitions and she will not let woman, man, politics or rabbit stand in her way.”
Gradually becoming more chaotic as the trailer progresses The Favourite appears to fall in line stylistically with the Lanthimos’ other work (Dogtooth, The Killing Of A Sacred Deer, The Lobster) that has made him a revered yet polarizing filmmaker known for primarily arthouse affair. However early impressions of The Favourite have been positive garnering rave reviews (it currently sits at 100% on the Tomatometer) and a healthy amount of early awards buzz for the film as well.
With the summer movie season now behind us, attention now shifts to the prestige season. Though it is too early to definitively declare frontrunners The Favorite appears to have established its presence early. Fellow period drama Mary Queen of Scots – itself boasting a star-studded cast and similar awards ambitions – is due for release later this year as well, however, the tones presented by the two films are drastically different. As foils to one another this dynamic will be interesting to track as they jockey for awards supremacy.