• Gareth Crook

Lamb (2021) - 7/10

I’ve not watched much Icelandic cinema. So I can’t tell you if this is typical. I can tell you it’s good though. It’s sparse and wintery as you might guess. It’s also a bit dark and magical. Maria (Noomi Rapace) and Ingvar (Hilmir Snær Guõnason) live on a remote farm. It’s quiet, idyllic. Lots of hard work and they’re vastly outnumbered by animals. They seem lonely. Unhappy even. Something missing. Iceland looks incredible. Almost unreal and it’s used to great effect. It’s all beautifully shot, from the amazing mountain vistas to the barns housing the sheep they tend. They’re lives are changed, seemingly for the better when a new lamb is born, a little different from the rest. It’s clear that shes used to mask an earlier unseen loss and for this reason things are going to end badly. Now this newborn creature is quite literally fantastic. So much so, it could rip you right out of the otherwise believable narrative, but she’s so adorable you just go with it. Things get a little more complicated when Ingvar’s brother Pétur (Björn Hlyner Haraldsson) turns up, but that’s really not the half of it. Calling this Lamb and having one with such an arresting role is misleading though, there’s a lot more to unpack. Iceland is gorgeous. Lambs are very cute. Loneliness is deadly.

7/10