Arthouse provocateur Yorgos Lanthimos has given us some of the most thrillingly unusual cinema of the 21st century, from his breakthrough film Dogtooth on through to his superb English-language achievements The Lobster and The Killing Of A Sacred Deer (both of which made our best-of-the-year lists, the latter also getting special recognition for providing one of 2017's most unsettling scenes.) Happily, his latest doesn’t look to stray too far from that path—which is to say, it looks like nothing else you’ll see this year.
The Favorite is actually a period piece of sorts, traveling back to an 18th-century England in which an unpredictable (and possibly unhinged) Queen Anne (Olivia Colman) seems more interested in idiosyncratic pursuits, leaving her friend Lady Sarah (Rachel Weisz) to do the hard work of actually running the country. But when a new servant named Abigail (Emma Stone) appears, it throws the pair’s carefully constructed routine into a new and ever-more-unstable arrangement. Of course, this being a Lanthimos film, all of this could be mere prelude to something else entirely—or who knows? Maybe the last half-hour will just be a one-shot of them eating a giant tub of popcorn. It’s hard to say what Lanthimos has up his sleeve, but with this power trio of actors leading the charge, The Favorite is an instant must-see for 2018. It’s already thrown blood in Rachel Weisz’s face, and this is just a teaser trailer.
The Favorite will be released theatrically November 23, 2018.