Or perhaps woman, mind you - seeing as how Reichardt (a fine female director who found prominence with 2008's Wendy and Lucy) frames the film around the tireless and progressively catty Emily Tethrow (Michelle Williams) whose denunciation of the small party's hired guide , the grizzled and ferocious Stephen Meek (Bruce Greenwood), forces her to take a more prominent role in the group's affairs.
The days pile up until the group encounters a lone Indian, whose life - much less his intent - is freely debated throughout until desperation leads to his ambiguous motivations guiding them to water, or perhaps an ambush.
Shooting in a fittingly old-fashioned academy ratio, Reichardt and cinematographer Chris Blauvelt produce stark, enduring images of the rustic, enervating frontier - mostly with lingering and frighteningly immense long shots.
As the grubby, barren landscape takes hold of its muddling captors, Reichardt ratchets the anxiety into baleful astriction - true life-or-death exigency. It's here where the film's ultimate power shift is also its parting goodbye - a fleeting, teasingly cryptic punctuator. [A]
Thanks Chase, I cannot wait to see this! I'll probably have to wait for DVD (or Blu-ray, fingers crossed) because it will never grace a screen in my neck o' the woods. I loved OLD JOY and WENDY & LUCY but this seems to be her masterpiece.ReplyDelete
It's truly a work of art - I look forward to your impressions.ReplyDelete