Directed by Taylor Sheridan and starring Jeremy Renner and Elizabeth Olson, Wind River tells the shocking true story of how an FBI agent teams with a town's veteran game tracker to investigate a murder on a Native American reservation in the Wyoming wilderness.
This ice cold thriller chills to the bone - smartly written, it challenges the audience to dig deeper under the snowy surface. Slower and more deliberate in approach, Wind River resists the temptation to go for cheap thrills, rather provoking more thoughtful outcomes.
Taylor Sheridan recently stated in an interview with Collider that Wind River would be the third movie in his Frontier Trilogy - along with 'Sicario' and 'Hell or High Water'. Comparing the three doesn't exactly work in Wind River's favour; though atmospheric it lacks the grit previous works have so well established.
Sheridan once again delivers an insight into an apparently corrupt justice system but doesn't follow through with an obvious meaning to it all. For the third film round the stakes aren't so much raised but more the pace is lowered - Sheridan takes time to build this cold and ruthless world he is creating. Unlike Sicario he builds tension between characters through still moments and dialogue, rather than through the heightened tension and shoot outs of his Mexican tale.
Renner delivers his most exceptional performance yet (although in fairness previous work hasn't really challenged) as does Olson, who's fish out of water performance tests her to step outside the Marvel world. The unlikely dynamic between the two buoys this mainly character driven film - highlighting their personality weaknesses, in apparent contradiction given their professional status. Both perform painlessly - they are no longer Scarlett Witch and Hawkeye, everybody now knows them to be but Corey and Jane.
It would be mistaken and possibly short sighted to label this movie a revenge flick. Wind River is a story of experience and journey, and highlights a marginalised and overlooked Native American culture, emphasising it's difficult engagement with the modern world. Created with thought provoking writing and picturesque cinematography - Wind River may lack the spice of Sicario and Hell or High Water but is certainly driven by the trilogies best set of characters.
I am going to give Wind River:
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Hi I’m James - a huge welcome to my film blog! I started this site just after my 14th birthday and have been bringing you my own take on the hottest box office arrivals and many art house triumphs ever since.