A traumatized veteran, unafraid of violence, tracks down missing girls for a living. When a job spins out of control, Joe's nightmares overtake him as a conspiracy is uncovered leading to what may be his death trip or his awakening.
Will (Ben Foster) and his teenage daughter, Tom (Thomasin Harcourt McKenzie), have lived off the grid for years in the forests of Portland, Oregon. When their idyllic life is shattered, both are put into social services. After clashing with their new surroundings, Will and Tom set off on a harrowing journey back to their wild homeland. The film is directed by Debra Granik from a script adapted by Granik and Anne Rosellini.Written by
The first 30 minutes of this film, I would rate as a 9 or even a 10. We are immersed in the soft, jade glow of the Pacific rainforest, and the quiet intimate life of two people who barely need language to communicate. Their relationship with nature is practical and intuitive rather than sentimental and abstract. When the characters do visit the city, it feels cold and alien, full of possibilities but also dangers.
Both actors are amazing, especially the young girl. For a young actress to express such mixed emotions clearly is very impressive. The movie has a very rooted sense of place. I was at a Q & A with the director and it was clear she made a very thorough effort to choose locations and actors (professional and amateurs) with an eye for realism.
I only knock this story because the arc is fairly predictable. For an American movie there is remarkably little plot and no villain or hero. It was hard to decide between a 7 and an 8.
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