Friday, January 15, 2016
The Revenant ***1/2 (2015)
The Revenant is visceral on all levels. Watching the film I swear I could feel the heat from the flames coming off the screen. The common motifs are Earth, Air, Wind, and Fire. Just pure, brutal, cinematic story telling. Starring Leonardo Di Caprio and Tom Hardy as 1820s frontiersmen in the Rockies who come into conflict, The Revenant totally immerses you in the environment like the writing of Jack London. Alejandro Inarritu's, who took the Oscar for Birdman last year, directed a far more superior film with amazing locations, special effects, and a heightened realism. DiCaprio, who excels at playing verbose characters who talk their way in and out of situations in movies like Catch Me If You Can and The Aviator, speaks minimal dialogue and relies on physical expression, almost like a silent performance. He continues to boaden his range. Hardy matches him in a performance reminiscent of Daniel Day Lewis. The beauty and ferocity of nature are present on every frame. Yet another must see film from 2015.