The Favourite Follows A Friendship Faceoff for the affection of Queen Anne. The film has a really twisted ending and throughout this article, I will be breaking down everything you need to know from the closing scenes.
There will of course be heavy spoilers so if you want to go into the movie with fresh eyes then I highly suggest that you leave now.
For everyone else, I’m Deffinition and Welcome to the channel where I ruin it so you don’t have to.
The Favourite: Plot Synopsis
We watch as Lady Sarah and Abigail fight it out on the battlefield of friendship in order to become Queen Anne’s Favourite. After Abigail has had a fall from grace and now is impoverished and has to resort to working as a maid, we watch her rise through the ranks of social acceptance, all the while being stopped by the overzealous Sarah, played by Rachel Weisz.
It’s clear from the outset that Lady Sarah does the majority of the thinking for Anne and she pretty much controls her life and the power that comes with being a Queen. It’s clear that Anne, whilst Royalty, has still had a pretty tough life and you can definitely see why she leaves the tougher decisions to someone else. Over the years Anne had and lost 17 children so she now keeps 17 rabbits in their place.
There also exists a war between France and England which Anne’s husband is involved in but she pretty much has little interest in the conflict what so ever. This is something that Lady Sarah relishes in so naturally when Abigail looks like she could threaten this position, things do not bode well for her.
Siding With Abigail
It’s easy to side with Abigail early on and she comes across as a kind-hearted woman with little more than good intention. Emma Stone is perfect casting for this role with her big blue eyes and youthful exuberance and you can see how someone would like her.
Lady Sarah however immediately picks up on her more sinister side. Abigail bites people, poisons them and is all round a bad egg. Sarah tries to have her expelled but Anne refuses to, instead expelling Lady Sarah from the castle grounds.
As Anne’s health fails, Sarah wishes to make one more attempt to regain Anne’s frienship and writes her a letter begging for forgiveness. Abigail, however, intercepts this letter and burns it after seeing how eager the Queen was to receive some news from her former friend. Abigail lies to the Queen and tells her that she suspects that Sarah had been diverting money and this is believable as earlier in the film Sarah raised taxes in order to pay for the war effort.
Anne banishes Sarah from the country and she is never seen again.
The Favourite: Ending Explained
That doesn’t mean that everything is all well for Anne and Abigail now though and with the latter pretty much having full power we see her sick and sadistic side finally come to the forefront. Abigail brutally kills one of Anne’s Rabbits in a disgusting way. Using her heel she digs into it causing it to urinate and bleed heavily as it writhes in pain.
Anne and Abigail participate in a massage as they have done throughout the film, however, Abigail is now cruel, giving pain wherever possible and we see a vision of the rabbits hopping around during this scene. This symbolises that grief and the unhappy reminder of how much Anne has lost will continue to haunt her till her dying day. She takes this out on Abigail’s head and an act that was once sensual and erotic becomes displeasurable like the relationship the two are now trapped in.
Abigail has been unmasked finally as the wicked woman she is, however, she must also live in submission in order to not be banished much in the same way that Sarah was. This kind of confusing submissive life is something that she always tried to move past but she knows her place will forever be at the foot of The Queen and all of her desires.
Abigail escaped one horrendous marriage only to end up in another and its a beautifully twisted ending that shows you that absolute power corrupts absolutely.
We know that Anne hasn’t long left for this world and with Sarah now replaced by Abigail she will deteriorate faster. Sarah was strict with Anne but she was being cruel to be kind, she stopped her from having sugar which seemed bad but it was to help her health. Under the eyes of Abigail she binges on cake, vomitting between bites and we really get the sense that just because you get something you want it doesn’t mean that it’s good for you. This too is reflected in Abigails quest and the film to me is about how getting everything our own way will destroy us to no end.
So, what are your thoughts on the film? Did you enjoy it and what did you take from the ending?
Comment below and let me know!