Review 6: The Revenant
The Revenant is the first new movie I have seen this year and thus reviewed for the challenge. I went in interested to see Alejandro González Iñárritu’s follow up from Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance), and, of course, Leonardo DiCaprio’s performance. I was a little worried that the trailer may have given too much of the plot away. I’d also heard that people had walked out during screening because of the gore, which I wasn’t worried about, but I was intrigued to see why?
The opening sequence in the film consists of a long take that reveals Glass (DiCaprio), Bridger (Will Poulter), and Hawk (Forrest Goodluck), who is Glass’s half Native American song, hunting an Elk. It’s beautiful and quickly reminded me of last year’s long take wonder, Birdman. I quickly found myself wondering if the whole film was supposed to be one long take, but a cut showed up and I was glad it wasn’t. Tom Hardy’s character, John Fitzgerald, quickly shows himself to be a bit of a dick confirming his role as the antagonist that the trailer showed.
The group is a hunting crew collecting pelts for a trading company led by Captain Andrew Henry, Domhnall Gleeson (this guy is busy!), which is suddenly attacked by Native Americans. The group of forty or so attempts to flee only escaping with 9 or so people. Glass is the scout of the group and is helping them get back to the nearest outpost. After a very brutal bear attack, Glass is left near fatally wounded making the hunting party’s quest all the more challenging.
It becomes apparent that they aren’t going to make it dragging Glass so Captain Henry offers $100 per man to stay back and “do what’s right.” Hawk, Bridger, and Fitzgerald volunteer and the story takes the turn. The trailer showed the events that would unfold setting the story here. Glass is left for dead after Fitzgerald kills Hawk, and convinces Bridger it’s for the best. Glass isn’t dead and through sheer will and amazing survival skills manages to push himself to hunt down Fitzgerald.
The movie is visually stunning and DiCaprio’s performance is reminiscent of Tom Hank’s performance is Cast Away. The film lacks dialogue for much of it, but there are some great conversations that take place. Add in some trippy dream sequences that Glass experiences and the movie is captivating from beginning to end. It’s definitely going to be in talks for best picture, best actor, and possibly best supporting actor for Tom Hardy. I’m giving this movie 8 out of 10 stars and will definitely be added to my shopping cart on Amazon once it’s out on Blu-ray.
Purchase the novel that inspired The Revenant here: