Yorgos Lanthimos captured my attention back in 2016 with The Lobster and then continued to hold my attention after The Killing of a Sacred Deer and The Favourite. I have access to the three films he directed before The Lobster so I went ahead and started with Kinetta. He wrote the screenplay with Yorgos Kakanakis, who is a Greek actor with Kinetta as his only writing credit ever. It’s a very strange one time collaboration that definitely requires a certain taste to enjoy.
The plot for Kinetta is pretty off the wall and wandering. A man obsessed with cars, a photographer, and a chambermaid form an unlikely alliance at a hotel to reenact struggles between a man and woman. It’s really strange because how they recreate them looks like anything but exciting or fun. The chambermaid even gets some gnarly bruises at times. There’s not a lot of dialogue but instead a lot of closeup movement.
Kinetta isn’t trying to blow you away with its storytelling because there isn’t much there. What makes Kinetta a worthwhile ride is how it’s shot. Thimios Bakatakis has worked with Lanthimos as cinematographer numerous times and is essential to his filmmaking. If you like over the shoulder, wobbly camera work, then Kinetta is something for you. It isn’t nearly as polished or coherent as his stuff like The Lobster or The Favourite, so be aware as you go in that it’s a strange experience.