By Sylvia Shipman, Social Media Manager —
This poignant film follows the investigation of the death of a young woman on an Indian reservation called Wind River in Wyoming. You quickly find out that she was raped, then ran six miles in the snow, then died of a pulmonary hemorrhage caused by the quick inhalation of freezing air- it’s not a murder but it might as well be. The sweeping shots of snow-covered wilderness and the hushed voices of the grief-stricken characters will put you at the heart of the investigation, and the ending of the movie will leave you as feeling as cold as mountain snow. A Netflix review said it best with “this movie shows men at their most honorable and men at their most monstrous, with women as the recipients of either by chance.” The “true story” aspect comes from similar deaths of Native American women all over the U.S. throughout history, and this movie provides a startling insight on society’s treatment of Native American women. You won’t be able to shake the uneasy feeling it gives you for days afterwards, and isn’t that what good filmmaking is?
A predecessor of Gossip Girl, this movie follows two step-siblings living in New York high society. It’s he-said-she-said to the extreme as they lie and manipulate their peers into saying and doing ridiculous things. The new girl in town changes things after she proves to be just as sharp as they are. The cast of young starlets includes Sarah Michelle Gellar, Ryan Phillipe, Reese Witherspoon, and Selma Blair, and the film is a perfect depiction of classic 90’s fashion and outdated slang.
The words I would use to describe this film are whimsical and spellbinding. It’s more of a play on film because sets actively change around the actors, giving the illusion that it’s a live performance. The costumes are gorgeous and the acting is great, as well, although the movie could ease up on the train foreshadowing.
If you are too poor to afford to watch HBO’s Westworld, this will satisfy for desire for the lawless landscape of romance and action. Jude Law’s Inman and Nicole Kidman’s Ada have just started their romance with a passionate kiss before he is drafted into the Confederacy. Their entire romance is told in flashbacks while Inman goes to hell and back to return to her. For the English majors out there, his journey parallels that of Odysseus, and this story shows that in war, there are really no victors. Cold Mountain will immerse you in the war-ravaged landscape of the American South.
Lord of the Rings
If you haven’t watched it, I highly recommend putting your phone away and delving into the world of Middle Earth. Tolkien’s storyline and world is so intricate that you can’t help but appreciate the beauty of it, even if you aren’t a fan of the fantasy genre. The soundtrack to this movie is amazing, as well.