Sunday, May 1, 2011

High Praise - & trailer - for Meek's Cutoff

"This tough, quiet revelation of a movie… makes everything feel at once mundane and mysterious. But tucked inside these carefully old, almost anecdotal narratives are intense emotions, intractable social problems and human truths that are too deep, too sad and perhaps too painfully absurd to name… MEEK'S CUTOFF is built around a dialectic of freedom and constriction… An undercurrent of mordant comedy… Ms. Reichardt is too wise and self-assured a filmmaker to offer easy answers. MEEK'S CUTOFF is as unsentimental and determined as Ms. Williams's character, its absolutely believable heroine. It is also a bracingly original foray into territory that remains, in every sense, unsettled." -- A.O. Scott, The New York Times
Click here to read the full review.

The year is 1845, the earliest days of the Oregon Trail, and a wagon train of three families has hired mountain man Stephen Meek to guide them over the Cascade Mountains. Claiming to know a short cut, Meek leads the group on an unmarked path across the high plain desert, only to become lost in the dry rock and sage. Over the coming days, the emigrants face the scourges of hunger, thirst and their own lack of faith in one another's instincts for survival. When a Native American wanderer crosses their path, the emigrants are torn between their trust in a guide who has proven himself unreliable and a man who has always been seen as a natural born enemy.