The Revenant (2015) Movie Review
The wind cannot defeat a tree with strong roots.
(Based on True Events)
While exploring the uncharted wilderness in 1823, legendary frontiersman Hugh Glass (Leonardo DiCaprio) sustains injuries from a brutal bear attack. When his hunting team leaves him for dead, Glass must use his survival skills in order to survive and to get revenge on those who left him to die.
“The Revenant” also stars Tom Hardy, Will Poulter, Domhnall Gleeson and Brad Carter in this harrowing, dark, and savagely brutal western revenge story that is destined to become a modern classic in years to come.
Harshly brutal as it is inspiring and morally beautiful, “The Revenant” is truly an unforgettable film. Iñárritu’s masterful and sharp directing anchor this film to greatness. He clearly knows what he is doing and proves once again (his previous masterful works of “Birdman” & “Babel”) that he can tell a story perfectly. The cinematography is some of the best to ever be put on the big screen. There were scenes from the movie that took my breath away and I honestly have no idea how they were able to accomplish.
The use of natural lighting and the use of real-life settings rather than green screen are great and invest you in the story. There are a few CGI animals throughout, but yet they look so real that you instantly forget that they are computer generated. Some of the year’s most intense sequences are present here, mainly a scene where DiCaprio is pitted against nature and is attacked by a bear. What Iñárritu is able to accomplish best here is getting the audience invested into this experience while crafting a beautiful and brutal film. The battle sequences are simply intense due to how they were filmed and the performances.
Leonardo DiCaprio does a great job portraying Hugh Glass, and both his physical and mental qualities feel real and he makes his character unforgettable. We as the audience are there with him the entire time and there is never a moment when we stop caring for his character. Glass is the most emotionally and brutally torn apart by what happens in this film, and yet we root for him until the very end. Tom Hardy is excellent as well in his role and plays a huge and important role in the film that I won’t spoil. He does a great job and in both roles I couldn’t see DiCaprio or Hardy, but their actual characters.
Now, movies before this including “Man in the Wilderness” have told the story of Hugh Glass, but nothing quite with the emotion, ambition and beauty that “The Revenant” does. The film-making here is masterful. The editing is very limited, with long sequencing that make you feel invested and into the plot. The film is long, at nearly two and a half hours. But for never a moment is it slow or tiring, but instead fulfilling and intense due to what director Iñárritu has here to offer us.
The screenplay is fantastic in this film and is smartly written. It manages to be both emotionally satisfying as well as feel human. The film hatches onto you and never lets you go until the very end, and long after the credits role you will be thinking about the film. The morals told here are beautiful and the story is a struggle but in the end a rewarding one.
Music composers Ryuichi Sakamoto, Alva Noto and Bryce Dessner do a great job composing the score. It fits in perfectly with every scene and refreshes the film with beauty, emotion, intensity and it’s brutal consequences.
In the end, this film is technically flawless.
If there is one movie you must see in 2015, it’s “The Revenant.” Not only is it one of the most intense, harrowing, emotionally films that you’ll ever see, but the film-making here is excellent, the performances are superb and it manages to spark a brutal but forgiving experience that you will never forget regardless if you came away liking it or not.
Final Rating: 10/10
Directed By: Alejandro González Iñárritu
Written By: Alejandro González Iñárritu, Mark L. Smith
Release Date: Dec 25, 2015 Limited | Jan 8, 2016 Wide
Runtime: 156 minutes