This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.
Joe Bandy’s review published on Letterboxd:
This review may contain spoilers.
A real tender heart at the center of this otherwise cold & dreary film which, after 2020 especially, I think explains its widespread acclaim.
It’s a story of heart breaking loss but placed in such a fun world (people are drastically over stating the John Wick influences though). It’s unflinching in the somber, existential conversations that fill up much of the runtime but it punctuates them with warm, human moments. The rainy Oregonian landscapes are scored with uplifting melodies and composed with admiration for the natural world. I especially love that the deep emotional trauma of our protagonist is visualized in ugly wounds that distort his face. Cage is amazing in it in a way that will hopefully help people remember that he has range and isn’t just a meme. But I love most that the movie ends with him washing them clean in the river and returning to his home where the final shot has him look up as a beam of light breaks through the cracks of his dark shed he’s secluded himself in and touch his face… *puts on Christian theology hat* as if to say the light of God will always find us where we are.
All that said the Discourse ™️ is kinda weird around this one. The influences of this seem to have been way over hyped. I found the food stuff to be pretty surface level stuff (but still gorgeous) and there really is not much John Wick world building. Why are y’all talking about Ratatouille? The only movie I kept thinking about was You Were Never Really Here in the way this deals in trauma and sad protagonists. But really it’s just a real straightforward movie about broken people trying to heal.