Yorgos Lanthimos’ latest masterpiece is a delicious journey into the heart of pitch black darkness.
Both a thriller and a parable, THE KILLING OF A SACRED DEER delivers a disquieting world of horrors that explodes the promise of the nuclear family.
Colin Farrell expertly plays Steven, a brilliant neurosurgeon whose clinical nature extends into the home where he lives a tightly regimented life with his wife (Nicole Kidman), and his two children. Unbeknownst to his family, Steven also has a mysterious friendship with Martin, a 16-year-old boy who, on the surface, is an awkward teenager who cherishes Steven’s company.
Martin’s seemingly perfect life takes a series of dark and disturbing turns when he introduces Steven to his family. As their friendship frays, everybody is faced with the terrifying reality that for every action there is a reaction.
Set in the same sterile, clinical world of Lanthimos’ previous films, THE KILLING OF A SACRED DEER represents a departure for a director who chooses to bring new horrors which hitherto had remained in check. If DOGTOOTH was the family microcosm as a prison and THE LOBSTER was a satire on relationships, THE KILLING OF A SACRED DEER is a treatise on the evil of inaction—a brutal dissection of logic and rationalism and their failure in the face of the impossible.
Sporting incredible performances from a uniformly superb cast, THE KILLING OF A SACRED DEER presses impossibly difficult moral questions without ever losing sight of its bone dry, droll humour. Complete with incredible sound design, arresting cinematography and a stellar, surprise turn by Alicia Silverstone, in THE KILLING OF A SACRED DEER you have a film that is very dark, very funny and very, very special.
The debate will rage long after the final scene closes which is exactly why we’re closing this year’s festival with this extraordinary film. (Christian Parkes)
Special Thanks to A24
West Coast Premiere
Director: Yorgos Lanthimos
Country: United Kingdom, Ireland
Runtime: 109 minutes