Edee (Robin Wright) is dealing with a significant personal tragedy in the present day. Her sister encourages her to get counselling, which she tries, but nothing helps Edee’s wounds and current suffering. Edee decides to throw her phone in the bin, and without telling anyone (including her sister), she purchases a home in the mountains, Wyoming. Determined to start fresh and refusing to go home, Edee requests someone to collect her car as she believes she will not need it. Settled into the house, she has zero interests in ever leaving the mountain or interacting with anyone in the future. Luckily for her, the home still has several belongings from the previous owner, who died of old age.
Edee finds that living a life alone in the mountains is not as easy as she thought. We witness her struggling in several areas, such as cutting wood, hunting for food, and even conducting general repairs on the home. She continues to live in her pain and frustration even when there are moments where living alone seems to be peaceful and pleasing. But soon, Edee meets a man named Miguel (Damian Bichir), who offers to teach her how to hunt and give general assistance and kindness. The two strike up a friendship and discover they share more things in common than they expected.
As a film, Land is a slow-burning drama movie. But to my surprise, it is also a short film which includes a small cast. This is a directional debut by Robin Wright, who also serves as the film’s executive producer and lead actress. The performance from Robin Wright is excellent, as is Damian Bichir, who is incredibly likeable on screen. The two together create a believable friendship and strong chemistry.
Visually Land is excellent is see. It’s obvious Robin Wright was determined to make a stunning looking film. There are some great shots of the mountains as Edee roams around. Sometimes we even get to enjoy the change in the weather or a view of the night sky. I was rather impressed by what was captured on screen, and these shots served as a greater reward for those who see this film in a cinema. For the most part, the filming style was great, but there were a couple of moments (especially with the film’s opening) where the camera was so shaky it was almost unbearable to watch. Thankfully, the entire movie wasn’t like this from start to finish.
While Land tells a dramatic and powerful story, the film’s first act was undoubtedly a bit slow to start with. Once Edee meets Miguel, I found myself far more invested. By the time the film’s third act is introduced, I found myself quite pleased given everything I had seen and again, it’s pretty touching and unforgettable.
Overall, Land is a heavy film, but it is also an incredibly touching and powerful film. After what feels like a slow start, the film thankfully picks up as it introduces likeable characters and finishes on a tone that I was surprised by. I found the movie rather pleasing and memorable. Visually, there are many stunning moments of landscape and nature, making this film rewarding for those who see it on the big screen.
Land (2021) is Available on DVD from July 7th!