LAMB (2021)

(Cinemas) I would argue that this isn’t horror — not even what people like to qualify as ‘A24 horror’ or ‘elevated horror’ (sigh) — but it’ll be labeled as such no matter what I say, so I consider it game and I want to write about it, so here we are.

In my eyes, LAMB is a high-concept relationship drama concerning a husband and wife who farm the lands and raise sheep. Apart from their sheep, their sheepdog, and their cat, they only have each other, but there’s something missing.

The first act goes to great trouble to obscure what the twist is, so I’ll respect that. I will say: I don’t think it’s a twist worth hiding.

What is a big deal is the fact that this feels like an A24 Béla Tarr film, one not too far removed from the previously recommended THE TURIN HORSE. Rightfully so, as Tarr was one of the executive producers of the project. It’s quiet, mannered, under-explains itself, but is full of existential threats. (It is a tad more optimistic than THE TURIN HORSE. Just a tad.)

Lastly, Noomi Rapace delivers an amazing performance. Without her ability to oscillate between hardened to tender and loving, this film simply would not work. (I’ll note that she was also an Executive Producer for the film.)

As usual with any work that I hesitate to pen a full summary, I suggest skipping the trailer — although I should state that the trailer quickly gives away the twist, and it has a completely inappropriate needle-drop — but here it is: