Everything You Need To Know About The Lighthouse: Starring Robert Pattinson And Willem Dafoe

10 September 2019
The Lighthouse, Movie, Robert Pattinson, Willem Dafoe
Image: A24

After receiving rave reviews at the Toronto International Film Festival, The Lighthouse looks set to be an Oscar contender, particularly for its two stars

Awards season is officially here. Marvel movies and superhero flicks may have dominated for the past few months, but with the Oscars in February rapidly drawing closer, now is the time we get some meatier film options – you know, less explosions and more attention to the mise-en-scene, camera angles, and performances.

With a slew of International Film Festivals like Cannes, Venice and Toronto having attracted some of Hollywood’s leading stars and most notorious critics, the buzz surrounding Oscar contenders is only increasing. One film which is garnered widespread attention is The Lighthouse from celebrated director Robert Eggers.

As it stands, the film is currently the sixth-highest scoring film of the year on Metacritic with an incredible rating of 90/100. If that doesn’t mean anything to you, know that its two stars – Robert Pattinson and Willem Dafoe – already have critics claiming they could be in contention for an Academy Award.

Consider your interest piqued? Excellent. Here’s everything you need to know about the black-and-white hallucinatory horror film.

The plot

The Lighthouse is a psychodrama from director Robert Eggers. It tells an intimate and maddening story of two lighthouse keepers who slowly lose their minds while living in isolation. Set in 1890 Nova Scotia, the film follows the story of an ageing lighthouse keeper named Thomas Wake (Dafoe) who teams with a younger man named Ephraim Winslow (Pattinson) on a remote and mysterious New England island. You can expect a lot of drama in this film, which is elevated by the black-and-white colour palette.

The cast

Willem Dafoe and Robert Pattinson star in the film as the two lighthouse keepers. In an interview with Deadline, Willem Dafoe spoke about what attracted him to the role and the sense of adventure it offered: “That relationship between the two men in it, I have lots of interest in that, because it expresses kind of elemental things about relationships and ways of being, and how you live your life, and belief,” said Dafoe. “For me, there was a lot to think about, and a lot to act upon in the screenplay.”

The film marks Eggers’ first directorial effort since breaking out four years ago with his Sundance favourite, The Witch, which continues to be widely regarded as one of the best horror efforts of the decade.


The trailer for The Lighthouse has since been released following a number of rave reviews it garnered at the Toronto International Film Festival. IndieWire’s chief critic Eric Kohn described the film as a “stunning showcase for Robert Pattinson and Willem Dafoe to unleash their wildest extremes, positioning them at the centre of a two-hander about a descent into madness in the middle of nowhere. It’s the best movie about bad roommates ever made.”

Already, the film is starting to attract some serious Academy Award buzz. A number of critics have expressed their desire to see Dafoe enter into the Best Supporting Actor race, potentially seeing him land his third Oscar nomination in a row after The Florida Project and his Best Actor nomination for At Eternity’s Gate. Considering both Pattinson and Dafoe are the lead of the film, it’s unknown just how production company A24 will establish the pair in the campaign for Oscar glory.

Via GQ Australia