Land: Movie Review
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LAND follows a middle-aged woman who ventures to live off the land in the Rocky Mountains, with virtually no experience in wildlife, who eventually finds that her stubbornness is both an asset and a drawback. LAND is a solid entertainment, with good acting and directing from Robin Wright, and has a strong moral worldview, but the movie also contains some foul language, violence and light pagan, environmentalist elements.
LAND begins with Edee (Robin Wright of HOUSE OF CARDS), a forty or fiftysomething woman, as she speaks to a therapist. Edee tells that she’s tired of everyone wanting her feel better. Cut to Edee on the street and shortly thereafter her vehicle. She appears to be venturing into the wilderness, the Rocky Mountains to be exact.
Once in the wild, Edee tells the man who helped her find her living quarters, a rundown cabin, that she doesn’t want her vehicle any longer and wants to be on her own, even though he advises against it. Edee takes to her new lifestyle, with some hiccups, however. For instance, cutting wood isn’t as easy as she expected. Neither is staying warm as the season grows colder.
Occasionally, Edee sees two people, a man and a boy. First, she sees them in a clearing close to her home. Later, she recalls a moment of closeness with the man while falling asleep. Viewers might recognize her wedding ring in these frames. Edee also recalls a conversation with a woman named Emma who encourages her not to harm herself.
What is all this about? Is Edee running or grieving out in the middle of nowhere on purpose?
Eventually, Edee’s poor personal care catches up to her in the wintertime. She falls unconscious to the floor while venturing outside. Thankfully for Edee, an outdoorsman named Miguel and a nurse, Alawa, come to her rescue. They bring her back to mobility and give her the necessary nutrients she needs to heal. The two newcomers into Edee’s story don’t ask questions about her way of life, though they’re clearly curious. Edee asserts that she’s fine on her own and won’t cause any trouble.
Despite her protestations, Miguel returns to show her the ropes of the land she now calls home. Will this land bring Edee the peace she desires?
LAND has a solid entertainment value for the viewers who like wilderness dramas like CALL OF THE WILD, NOMADLAND and INTO THE WILD. As Edee, Robin Wright does a great job performing the highs and lows of her character as well as directing the movie. LAND’s score is ethereal and pulsing alongside onscreen scenes of beautiful greenery and wild animals. Viewers will find themselves rooting for the wellbeing of Wright’s character.
LAND has a strong moral worldview. At first, the protagonist looks for an escape from her grief that plays on humanist characteristics of a do-it-yourself nature, but ultimately, she learns that her running into a drastically different lifestyle was futile unless she processes her pain. There are subtle environmentalist elements that capture the beauty of Creation and includes a song lyric referring to Mother Nature that the protagonist sings for fun. Also, there’s a brief scene where a man is on his deathbed and his friends perform a Native American pagan ritual. Mainly, though, LAND stresses the value of friendship, family, helping other people, and learning new things. MOVIEGUIDE® advises strong caution for older children because of some foul language, violence and the Non-Christian elements in LAND.
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