Wild

by | Jan 8, 2015 | 0 comments

Jean Marc-Vallée Give Us Yet Another Incredible Film Held Solely by Witherspoon

What an incredibly hard film to make. A woman trekking the wilderness for three months, you would think that after 40 minutes the film would get repetitive. Jean Marc-Vallée’s newest film proves him to be an extremely underrated director.

After bringing Dallas Buyers Club to life, he has now premiered Wild, which should make him undeniable for the awards and critics. Similarly, Reese Witherspoon has managed to make a comeback after a dreadful couple of years in the rom-com biz.

Wild tells the true story of Chery Strayed’s (Reese Witherspoon) 1,100-mile journey through the Pacific Crest Trail in order to find redemption and purity. Through her trek we receive flashbacks of her life where we see she had a loving husband (Newsroom’s Thomas Sadoski) and a sweet and warm mother (a great Laura Dern). As Cheryl delves into the wild we delve into her life, learning why such a trek is undertaken.

The flashbacks, often difficult for most directors, are clearly cut in and expertly handled so that even as the time jumps aren’t stringed chronologically, we know exactly where are. Vallée’s hand is also seen in the constant fear he immerses us when Cheryl encounters other men in the wild. The audience is in constant fear that Cheryl will be raped, which not only mounts tension and nail-biting moments, but it also analyzes us and our perception of the human race.         

Witherspoon’s performance will probably follow Matthew McConaughey’s path after he worked in Vallée’s Dallas Buyers Club. Vallée is turning out to be a rebooting director, in the sense that it launches actors back into the mainstream. Vallée helped McConaughey earn an Oscar, which led him to jump into the A-list category and even move into the blockbuster world with Interstellar. Witherspoon is similarly generating Oscar buzz, which might give her a second chance at maintaining herself in the mainstream. Witherspoon, however, has also been working herself to climb back to the top, her work as a producer on Gone Girl allowed her to share on a big hit, which is also generating Oscar buzz.

Witherspoon’s takes on Cheryl’s role fearlessly doing multiple nude scenes, acting without the ubiquitous celebrity make-up, and taking on the load of a whole film herself (plus her backpack which weighed more than her). Witherspoon excels, in particularly with the first scene where she is taking of her boots to find bloodied and rotted nails. When she accidently knocks her boot off the precipice she ragingly throws the other boot after it and screams “BITCH!” The scene hits you with the reality and tragedy that the story is going to be in.

The film is tough, symbolic, and hard to watch, so you better be ready mentally for what’s coming; Vallée makes extremely psychologically harrowing films, but as tough as it might be, the film is a must-see. It has solidified Vallée as the go-to director for a juicy role.

  • OVERALL MOVIE RATING 88% 88%

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What is your favorite Reese Witherspoon movie? Let me know in the comments section.

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