2016.7: The Revenant (Cinema)
Extraordinary. An Arthouse epic that displays nature as both breathtakingly beautiful and horribly terrifying. Impossibly spectacular landscapes juxtaposed with butchered bodies, heart-stopping moments of natural beauty juxtaposed with moments of brutal ugliness. Moments of kindness and moments of banal hatred. Its one hell of an experience. One for the ages.
Cinematographer Emmanuel Lubezki has lensed some pretty amazing-looking films (Gravity, The Tree of Life, Children of Men) but this may be his masterpiece; the only tragedy of him walking away with the Oscar next month is that it previously seemed a dead-cert for the also truly deserving work by Roger Deakins on Sicario. Deakins must feel like he’s just been mugged again- will he ever get that long-overdue Oscar? And while Leonardo DiCaprio is also surely the safest bet for his own Oscar, I’d actually suggest that Tom Hardy damn near steals the film from him in one of his typically understated performances; a Supporting Actor nod maybe?
Away from all the Awards talk that dominates the headlines at this time of year, The Revenant remains a remarkable film and contender already for Film of the Year. As usual with my reviews of ‘new’ films, I won’t progress into spoiler territory and will leave an in-depth summation of this film for its blu-ray release, but goodness me, what a film. I can well imagine this film being in my all-time top ten, its that good. I’m sure the film will have its critics, it won’t be for everyone, and it’s two and a half-hour running time will be too much by far for some, but this film was so up my street it could have been three hours long, I’d have loved it.
It almost feels like a film made for me You know how it feels when a film just clicks? If a film that feels like The Grey mixed with The Assassination of Jesse James By The Coward Robert Ford mixed with The Thin Red Line rocks your boat then be assured, you’ll adore this film, simply adore it. Its Pure Cinema, a film for the senses, and one that surely needs to be seen on the largest screen you can. Don’t wait for that blu-ray unless you really have to.
One more thing; the haunting soundtrack (by Ryûichi Sakamoto and Alva Noto) is so odd it actually sounds like Vangelis’ Beaubourg at one point, and even his Blade Runner at another, and sometimes Wendy Carlos’ The Shining too. Thats just crazy. And yet it works brilliantly, even though it damn near killed the speakers at the multiplex here. I’ve got to get that soundtrack…
Anyway, excuse all this gushing, but I just got in from seeing a pretty great film. Its a lovely rare buzz these days.