Movie Review: The Revenant

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Official Tagline: In the 1820s, a frontiersman named Hugh Glass sets out on a path of vengeance against those who left him for dead after a bear mauling.

Written by: Mark L. Smith , Alejandro G. Iñárritu
Directed by: Alejandro González Iñárritu

Starring: Leonardo DiCaprio, Tom Hardy, Will Poulter

The Revenant is a movie that you very much want to love, and there are some moments in the film that are amazing in the look and execution of the action, but The Revenant as a whole is unsatisfying. That is not to say that the film isn’t worth seeing, it is a good film, just not a great film. Much like the other winter swept western themed drama opening now, The Hateful 8; The Revenant is much longer than it needs to be and the director is too taken with the look of the film to notice that the story is uneven and loses narrative momentum in several places.

There are several outstaying moments in the film; a visceral Indian attack that makes the audience feel as if they are in the middle of the action starts the film running at a break neck pace, but that pace soon slows down. The bear attack of Leonardo DiCaprio’s Hugh Glass, is violent, suspenseful and makes you wonder how on earth they filmed it. A chase scene involving Glass and a horse being pursued by angry French trappers is unbelievable in a good way. But there are also long stretches that are nice to look at, but add nothing to the story. The film also has more than its fair share of coincidences [not as many as Hateful 8] that push the suspension of debrief a bit and causes the viewer to being questioning the plot and that is never a good thing in a movie.

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This film is Leonardo DiCaprio’s film and he gives a very convincing performance as the revenged fueled mountain man Hugh Glass. Filled with grief, anger and determination, he pushes his broken and battered body across a frozen tundra to get revenge on the conniving John Fitzgerald [Tom Hardy] who killed his son and left him for dead. Tom Hardy gives another solid performance as the antagonist and in nuanced ways gives us some insight and understanding in why Fitgerald is such a craven character. The other actors are almost an afterthought. DiCaprio and Hardy fuel this movie. DiCaprio’s is the more restrained of the two and in the final analysis, the stronger performance.

The Revenant is a good film in many ways, but the individual parts are better than the movie as a whole. Check it out if you are a DiCaprio and Hardy fan, with a run time of 156 minutes you are going to be with them for a while.
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Screen Writer Ink
Fade In Is Just The Beginning

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