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'Kinds of Kindness' Review: This Yorgos Feature Certainly Won't be for Everyone

By Jack Ransom June 24, 2024
Kinds of Kindness

Kinds of Kindness is the latest film from eccentric auteur Yorgos Lanthimos. It feels like only yesterday that the bonkers yet utterly brilliant Poor Things graced our screens, yet here Lanthimos, Stone and Dafoe once again return with another injection of expected darkness, discomfort, unpredictability and humour. I still have yet to see a couple of Lanthimos’ older works (Dogtooth, Alps), however I am a big fan of The Lobster and The Killing of a Sacred Deer, of which Kinds of Kindness is more so in the vein of than The Favourite and Poor Things.


Kinds of Kindness tells the tales of a man (Jesse Plemons) who seeks to break free from his predetermined path, a cop (also Plemons) questions his wife's (Emma Stone) demeanour after her return from a supposed drowning, and a woman (also Stone) searches for an extraordinary individual prophesied to become a renowned spiritual guide.


I had to sit on this one for a couple of days as it is quite a lot to take in over the course of the 164 minute runtime. Firstly, the film certainly feels its length, it’s engaging yes, but at the same time it feels undeniably lethargic at points and never moves out of its slow burn pacing over the course of each chapter. The overarching theme (to me) is how far someone would go for love or devotion through the twisted lens’s of self mutilation, murder, sex, mania, dreams and uh, body moisture purity levels.

Kinds of Kindness

This may be my own love for Poor Things still very much on my mind, but this may have felt a tad of an afterthought for Yorgos and co. (possibly each chapter was meant to be an entire feature at one point), but the emotional investment was just not there for me and instead very much aimed for cold, distant and quirky, but it lacked the venom of The Killing of a Sacred Deer and the comedic heart of The Lobster.

From a technical perspective this is a slick, sharp and cool affair. Lanthimos switches from the retro, grandiose beauty of Bela’s world tour to a mixture of cold, modern, lonely, trippy everyday locales and at times undeniably ‘peak cinema’ level shots. The thunderous, uncomfortable deep piano notes and random stabs of strings that are smattered throughout conjure up a devious atmosphere effectively.

Kinds of Kindness

Performance wise everyone is very much tuned into the required tone for the material. With a superb cast line-up spearheaded by Emma Stone, Jesse Plemons, Willem Dafoe, Margaret Qualley & Hong Chau. As the cast revolve roles throughout each chapter, they get to showcase these consistently unpredictable, unnerving, perplexed (and perplexing) archetypes.

Kinds of Kindness certainly won’t be for everyone and personally I may have appreciated it more than actually enjoyed. The performances are dedicated and there are some genuinely fantastic and unnerving scenes on display. It’s just a shame the dark comedy never really reaches laugh out loud status or particularly outrageous and the pacing is undeniably slow at times.

Star Rating

Rating Kinds of Kindness

Kinds of Kindness releases in cinemas September 28


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