The RevenantDVD of the Week Thursday, April 28th, 2016
dvd of the week
The Revenant, a ruthless and bombastic tale of revenge in the cold western American frontier, is focused on a man battling nature, with Leonardo DiCaprio’s Hugh Glass trying to survive alone while severely wounded in the cold, snowy mountains; he dreams and hallucinates memories of his dead Pawnee wife and their son. He is trying to find Tom Hardy’s searing, deliciously evil John Fitzgerald, a motor-mouth sociopath who, among other wretched acts, had abandoned Glass to die after the rest of their hunting party had (rather bizarrely) left Fitzgerald to care for him. Meanwhile, a band of Arikara Indians is hunting down the white men who kidnapped their chief’s daughter. The violence, whether inflicted by men, bears, and nature, is maybe excessive, but is definitely totalizing. Alejandro Iñárritu and his genius cinematographer Emmanuel Lubezki both won Oscars, as they did with last year’s Best Picture winner Birdman. The Revenant is epic, taciturn, and classic in both its visuals and themes, and its brutality is only surpassed by its beauty. DiCaprio finally won his Oscar partly for suffering so much for the role, but mostly for embodying a mythical American individuality, determination, and masculinity that may be aging but is still beloved by the kind of people who are Academy members.
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