Release year: 2017
Director: Alejandro G. Iñárritu
Screenwriter: Alejandro G. Iñárritu, Mark L. Smith, Michael Punke (based partly on the novel by)
Starring: Leonardo DiCaprio, Tom Hardy, Domhnall Gleeson, Will Poulter, Forrest Goodluck, Paul Anderson, Kristoffer Joner, Duane Howard
Ratings: 3 Oscars: Best Actor (Leonardo DiCaprio, Best Director, Best Cinematography. 9 Oscar Nominations: Best Picture, Best Supporting Actor (Tom Hardy), Best Film Editing, Best Costume Design, Best Makeup, Best Sound Mixing, Best Sound Editing, Best Visual Effects, Best Production Design. 3 Golden Globes: Best Picture Drama, Best Actor (Leonardo DiCaprio), Best Director. 1 Golden Globe nomination: Best Original Score. 1 Empire Award: Best Picture.
After being mauled by a bear, frontiersman Hugh Glass (DiCaprio) is left in the care of Fitzgerald (Hardy) and Bridger (Poulter) by the rest of the hunting team. But Fitzgerald forces Bridger to abandon him for dead and a long fight for survival and revenge begins for Glass.
Based on what is allegedly true events (it’s hard to verify considering it’s age), Iñárritu’s movie had the focus on a lot of people at last year’s Oscars. Not just because Iñárritu was hot topic after winning with Birdman (2014), his previous movie, but more because everyone suggested, that this was the movie that would finally win DiCaprio (Inception, 2010) the golden statue after four nominations where he failed to win. And he did win it and deservedly so. As Glass, DiCaprio delivers yet another power performance where he again and again convinces us, just as he makes us suffer together with him on screen. But it truly seems as if everyone delivers some of theit best performances in Iñárritu’s wild life drama. The always intense and excellent Hardy (Mad Max: Fury Road, 2015), who was nominated for the movie, may deal with a less intense role, but that doesn’t mean that his portray of the hard hearted Fitzgerald is less worth, in fact, his subtle performance impresses just as much as DiCaprio’s intense performance does. Poulter (We’re the Millers, 2013) once again proves himself one worth keeping an eye out for and no matter how much you may have enjoyed Skarsgaard’s brilliant take on Pennywise, you are left wondering what this interesting young character actor would have done with the killer clown. Gleeson (Ex Machina, 2014) has a small part but still leaves an impression. The setting is excellent and the costume and makeup looks incredible realistic. In fact, you feel convinced that everybody was left half starving in the wilderness while shot at, just to make this gruesome and ruthless movie. Iñárritu is getting famous for his long shots which must be very hard for the actors but which adds an incredible realism to the movie. Something the especially this wilderness movie benefits from. The nature shots are simply stunning and as a result, the movie becomes a lecture on the double-sided nature of the wilderness which is as deadly as it is beautiful. It is not a movie you will sit down and watch again and again, it is a hard watch, but it is a good movie. A very good movie indeed. Iñárritu is slowly becoming one of the finest director in our time.
Shot chronologically on an 80-day schedule that took place over a total principal photography time period of nine months. This unusually long production time was due to the cold weather conditions, the remoteness of the locations and director Alejandro G. Iñárritu’s and cinematographer Emmanuel Lubezki’s aesthetic plan to shoot only with natural light for maximum realism. Only a few shooting hours were available every day and had to be carefully planned in advance.
Picture copyrights: SF Film