Leave No Trace (2018)

Leave No Trace
Director: Debra Granik
Writer: Debra Granik, Anne Rosellini
Based on: Peter Rock‘s novel My Abandonment
Cast: Thomasin McKenzie, Ben Foster, Dana Millican, Jeff Kober, Isaiah Stone, Dale Dickey
Seen on: 4.8.2018

Content note: PTSD

Plot:
Tom (Thomasin McKenzie) and her father Will (Ben Foster) live in the great forest of a state park. Their life isn’t exactly easy, but they are happy with the way things are, surviving mostly of the land. It’s just that it is actually isn’t legal to live in a state park. And Tom should probably be in school. So when they get spotted, their lives are quickly turned upside down.

Leave No Trace is a quiet, touching film that tells its actually devastating, realistic story with such a calm attitude that you’re able to breathe and work through the trauma along with the characters.

Film poster showing sunlight slanting through a redwood forest, with Ben Foster and Thomasin McKenzie very small in the corner walking through the forest.
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Regression (2015)

Regression
Director: Alejandro Amenábar
Writer: Alejandro Amenábar
Cast: Ethan Hawke, Emma Watson, David ThewlisDavid Dencik, Aaron Ashmore, Aaron Abrams, Devon Bostick, Dale Dickey, Adam Butcher, Lothaire Bluteau
Seen on: 18.10.2015

Plot:
Angela (Emma Watson) has accused her father John (David Dencik) of abusing and raping her. While Angela remains at the church where she sought refuge, police detective Bruce (Ethan Hawke) tries to figure it out. But John claims to have no recollection of ever assaulting Angela. So Bruce looks to psychology professor Kenneth (David Thewlis) for help. Kenneth suggest hypnotic regression therapy to figure out what is going on. Soon Bruce finds himself deep into a farreaching network of satanistic abuse.

I suspect that I would have liked Regression if the general plot development hadn’t been so completely clear to me from the start. Although even so it wouldn’t have been completely unproblematic.

regression

[SPOILERS]

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Winter’s Bone (2010)

Winter’s Bone is Debra Granik‘s second movie, starring Jennifer Lawrence, John Hawkes, Lauren Sweetser and Dale Dickey.

Plot:
Ree (Jennifer Lawrence) is only a teenager, but she’s been taking care of her family – a psychotic mother and two little kids – ever since her father got arrested for drug dealing. When the sheriff (Garret Dillahunt) turns up to tell her that her father gave their house and land as security for his bail and disappeared, Ree can’t take the risk of losing everything. So she starts to look for her father. But it seems that nobody wants her to find him.

Winter’s Bone is an excellently cast, wonderfully shot and very atmospheric film. Despite being not that “actiony”, it’s a very tense film and one that will draw you in right away.

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