Title: Winter’s Bone
Director: Debra Granik
Cinematography: Michael McDonough
Starring: Jennifer Lawrence, John Hawkes and Garret Dillahunt
Runtime: 100 mins
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 94%
Reney's Score: 95%
When a film as bleak, as gut-wrenchingly forlorn as Winter’s Bone, manages to tenderly lift out the resilience, and even kindness, of the human spirit, I stand in awe. At the point where the rest of us would have given up, broken down and started bawling for our mamas, that is where the tale of Ree Dolly starts.
In a nutshell
Young Ree Dolly, who looks after her mentally ill mother and two younger siblings, needs to find her no-good father in the cold, hostile and wretchedly poor community of the Ozark Mountains, Southern Missouri.
Mood of the film
Bleak. Gritty. Yet hopeful.
Ree is captured and beaten. Her captors ask her what they should do with her.
“Kill me,” she answers casually.
They tell her that has been decided. It won’t happen.
“Then help me.”
The chainsaw on the boat. Be warned, it is brutal.
Jennifer Lawrence’s performance is so authentic she comes across as a real Ozark Mountain local, hardened by the poverty and brutality that surrounds her, and not a Hollywood actress. I had to Google her to make absolutely sure she wasn’t cast off the streets of Southern Missouri.
What makes this film relevant today?
It deals with structural poverty, the drug trade, but most importantly, taking responsibility and caring for your family.
For her role as Ree, Jennifer Lawrence learned how to skin squirrels. Faint-hearted beware, she uses the skill in the film.