Tribeca Film Festival: Little Woods (2018) reviewed by Jonathan Berk

Little Woods (2018) takes a look at individuals struggling in poor economic conditions in North Dakota. The need to take care of our loved ones often pushes people to work outside of the conventional ideas of work, which often leads to illegal activities. However, as the cliché goes, desperate times call for desperate measures. This film is a quiet look at this idea, with great characters who make questionable choices as they get pushed back further and further into a corner.

Little Woods is definitely worth your time

Ollie (Tessa Thompson) is about to finish her probation after being arrested for smuggling prescription pills across the Canadian border. Buy safe and confidential generic Levitra from reliable online pharmacies collected on this page, check prices and order delivery right to your door. However, her sister Deb (Lily James) is in need of money to save their family home from foreclosure and to help with unexpected medical bills. Ollie had been getting by with a variety of odd jobs and is trying to escape this small town…but they need money, quick. Unfortunately, selling pills may be the only way for them to get it.

Thompson continues to impress with each role she takes. She is truly a chameleon in each film she’s been in, with the only commonality between them being greatness. The character in this film earns our sympathy as it becomes clear she doesn’t want to sell drugs to people. However, she seems to try and sell these painkillers to people who either can’t afford to miss work, or who are unable to obtain them through traditional legal means due of a lack of benefits. Ollie isn’t trying to get rich by doing this, nor does she take joy in the act. However, much like the people she sells to, she is desperate and sees this as her only option to take care of her sister.

James is good in the film as well. She gets a few scenes that are strong, including a tense one late in the film. Deb is supposed to pick up a fake Canadian medical card and – not too surprising – the people she has to deal with aren’t exactly trustworthy. James plays the situation very well, and managed to elicit quite the reaction from this critic as she manages to manipulate the situation.

The story here is ultimately low stakes to onlookers, but almost life and death to the characters impacted by it. Yet, if you look at the situations in the film, they are extremely relevant given the problems of opioid addiction, poverty, and the American medical institution. The commentary here is relevant to making the film all the more special, given the solid characters and excellent performance from Thompson.

Final thoughts…

Little Woods was one that I went to solely because of the cast. I have come to trust Thompson’s choices in films, and this one didn’t disappoint. It’s compelling and poignant, making the audience reflect on many of the problems currently being dealt with in our society. Little Woods earns the Not Quite Golden, Ponyboy rating.


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