Parents' Guide to

The Favourite

By Jeffrey M. Anderson, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 16+

Vicious, darkly funny, brilliantly cast costume dramedy.

Movie R 2018 119 minutes
The Favourite Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this movie.

Community Reviews

age 17+

Based on 25 parent reviews

age 17+

age 18+

Truly Disgusting

The only positive things going on here are the costumes and the real settings. The only reason I gave it one star and an 18 year and up rating is because those are the lowest possible scores. Even if you discount the disturbingly perverse and gratuitous sexual content this is just a terrible movie, not suited for children of any age (including most adults). Yes, these characters are real people from an era known to have had such excesses but this movie makes it seem that none of them ever even tried to hide the extent to which greed, lasciviousness and the hunger for power motivated them. I've been very pleased so far with the accuracy of your ratings but this rating is so far off base it makes me question your whole system.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (25 ):
Kids say (14 ):

Director Yorgos Lanthimos adds a dose of wicked, whiplash humor to his usual bleakness in this largely effective costume movie, filled with deep-focus visuals and strong, ferocious women. Lanthimos' previous movies -- like Dogtooth, The Lobster, and The Killing of a Sacred Deer -- were relentlessly dystopian and malicious, and The Favourite continues that worldview. There are few, if any, good people in Lanthimos' movies. But this time, thanks perhaps to a screenplay by Deborah Davis and Tony McNamara, the iffy behavior can at least inspire laughter.

It helps that both Stone and Weisz are so good and so brilliantly cast. Most actors in these kinds of movies tend to get swallowed up by the costumes, the stiff dialogue, and the stagnant visuals. But Stone is clever, perky, and playful, and Weisz is cool, decisive, and sensual; they clash beautifully. Lanthimos uses an ultra-wide-angle lens that causes rooms to warp as it pans, and this creates a distinctly off-kilter quality, adding to the nightmarishness of the world. (It also makes things a bit more kinetic.) But in the end, the back-and-forth between the two central characters doesn't really have an ending, and The Favourite drags on too long before fizzling out. Thankfully, Colman's winning, unfettered performance as the petulant queen is a memorable takeaway.

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