|Wendy and Lucy
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Studio: Oscilloscope Pictures Release Date: 05/05/2009 Run time: 80 minutes Rating: R
Kelly Reichardt's second feature, Wendy and Lucy, has even more Pacific Northwest piney quietude than her debut Old Joy, since its starring couple is a canine-human pair rather than a male duo. Will Oldham again makes a charged appearance, this time as Icky (Will Oldham), a grungy, train-hopping punk. Based on a short story, this time Jonathan Raymond's "Train Choir," Wendy and Lucy's dialogue is a sparse spattering amongst long, languid scenes that moodily portray a young woman, Wendy (Michelle Williams), suffering economic crisis and road trip malaise on her way to work Alaskan fishing boats. The bulk of the story takes place in Portland, where her Honda breaks down and she must engage the local mechanic (Will Patton) and Walgreen's security guard (Wally Dalton) for honest advice and for help finding her dog, Lucy, who disappears during one of Wendy's disasters. Wendy and Lucy would aptly be titled Wendy's Bad Day, as problems pile up due to one main misstep. Williams does a great job portraying a woman who is semi self-sufficient but clueless in the art of survival. As the film speaks to many young people who have been broke and stranded, one will inevitably wonder why Wendy makes the unwise choices she does, for example sleeping in a dangerous area along a train track instead of finding a safer campground, or wandering the streets looking for her lost pooch in lieu of hunkering down for a temporary part-time job. The film straddles the line between social realism and fantasy in this regard, provoking frustration during certain plot twists. However, Wendy and Lucy is a pleasure to look at for its grainy greenery, hypnotic, sweeping landscape and train yard shots, and for the story, when it centers on developing the deep bond between a lady and her dog. --Trinie Dalton
- A gurl and her dawg
Travelling to Alaska to find work, Wendy (Michelle Williams) finds herself stranded in Portland with a broken down car. While trying to get her car fixed, she experiences further mishaps, including losing her beloved dog, Lucy. Indie director Kelly Reichardt wisely tells this simple story in a straight-forward, unadorned manner. The minimal dialogue means that most of the story is told through Williams' expressive face; indeed, Williams is the entire show. With short hair and no makeup, the normally glamorous actress convincingly pulls off the role of the homeless young woman. Her sorrowful eyes and pixie-ish features show us all we need to know about the character. Williams received several award nominations, including Best Female Lead from the Independent Spirit Awards (she lost to Melissa Leo in "Frozen River). Although some people may find the plot boring, lovers of indie cinema are likely to find more here to appreciate.
My reviews are usually much longer, but I think the length of this review is appropriate for "Wendy and Lucy."
- Many are like Wendy...One blown engine away from being forced to make tough decisions....
I thought the movie was very compelling and enlightening. For me it illustrated that many of today's youth (in their late teens and early twenties) are like Wendy: living on the fringe, without the benefit of a supportive family, an elaborate education, a skill or craft, or money behind them.
However, Wendy has a work ethic and a desire to better her position, evidenced by her long trip to find a job. She does not have the sense of entitlement that you see in more priveledged young people today. Again, many people in Wendy's straights are just one blown car engine away from a change in the course of their lives.
It is a simple story, beautifully told and filmed in Ms. Reichardt's visually engrossing style. The long camera-panning scenes of the landscapes and the way the camera follows Wendy as she walks and runs thru the town at night are absolutely beautiful while also serving to move the story forward. Visually, the movie is stunning.
Three other impressions:
- Walter Dalton as the security guard gives a fine and subdued performance. His character illustrates a similar plight (and work ethic) as Wendy's. He is an elderly man working 12 hour shifts and states that the job is better than his last.
- It seemed to me that many in the movie would have liked to have helped Wendy more than they did, but because of the system and economic situation they were in themselves, they could not. (For example, the store manager and the auto mechanic, and even the security guard).
- Michelle Williams is wonderful in the movie. The long silences did not bother me. Her expressions and movements demonstrated to me that she is a girl who is down on her luck but has not despaired yet. She is thinking of the best solution for the problems she faces. Wendy may have made a couple of bad decisions. However, look at how young and on her own she is.
Overall, a fine movie by a fine director. I highly recommend.
- Booooooring! Don't believe all the critics' hype!
"Luuuucy! Where are you? Luuucy! Come here, girl!" There, now you don't need to bother watching this movie (unless you are a total dog fanatic). Wendy travels across country with her dog, Lucy; loses Lucy; spends the next hour of the film hunting for Lucy; finally finds her; and then decides to hop on a train and leave her behind. Whaaat? Boring and pointless....more info
- Succinctly and mourningly poetic
Michelle Williams delivers a very understated performance as a down-on-her-luck Wendy, who brings her loyal dog, Lucy, along with her to a journey for a supposed prosperity. It is a very quiet and subtle performance that, Wendy, with little money and no dog food, and an incident which prompts her to lose Lucy, meshes along with her surroundings: a dry and monotone small town, where the sun shines to merely beat down the lumbering, sluggish skins of the inhabitants.This is a very important work, especially in light of today's economic situation: "You need an address to get an address, and you need a job to get a job." succinctly says the kind-hearted security guard who provides help to Wendy during her descent into financial and emotional ruins. "Wendy and Lucy", directed by Kelly Reichardt, emphasizes the many possibilities that are available to an individual by virtue of how everything could be wiped away by being in a little mishap that triggers a chain of unfortunate events, each worse than the previous ones. The dire circumstances that Wendy finds herself in may not be grandiose or explosive, but her plight is all the more heartbreaking and terrifying: just a few more dollars for a bag of dog food for Lucy would have made all the difference. Along with "The Wrestler", though this one is on a simpler and quieter scale, "Wendy and Lucy" is visual poetry that examines a broken and fragile character that perseveres through life's many disappointments. Very ethereal and melancholic; it is simply beautiful....more info
- Short and Bittersweet
At 80 minutes long, this has got to be the shortest movie not actually called a short film I have ever seen. I found myself wishing for a bit more (or any) backstory. We find Wendy and Lucy in a park in a nameless town in Oregon. We soon find out that Wendy is from Indiana and is on her way to Alaska in hopes of finding a job. She and Lucy are living out of her car, an old honda accord, and are on an extremely tight budget. Wendy has just a few hundred dollars to her name, and it is going fast. Things go from bad to worse very quickly, and worst of all, Lucy goes missing. The bulk of the movie deals with Wendy trying to get things back on track and find her dog, who she clearly loves.
This is a very understated movie to say the least. There is virtually no soundtrack, unless you call Wendy's humming to herself a soundtrack. It feels almost like a documentary, I think director Reichardt was going for simplicity and realism over sentimentality, maybe too much so. It is beautifully shot, however, and has a few moments that go by quickly but are worth appreciating. This is obviously not a high-budget movie where things explode and gorgeous people say carefully scripted things. It is a very simple tale of a young woman on the fringe of society, someone you might well ignore or fail to notice if you encountered them in real life. Michelle Williams gives a fine performance as Wendy, and though Reichardt seems to almost deliberately avoid trying to make you care about what happens to her and Lucy, you may just find that, by the end of the film, you do. ...more info
- Half a story ...
As a teacher of homeless youth I find it amusing that so many reviewers read historic-rendering drama into the lives portrayed in this movie. Homelessness is crude, factual, nonromantic and filled with mundane issues of surviving a life of where to sleep, getting food & money and socializing with like situated compadres. On the whole the movie and acting portrayed Wendy's journey and encounters fairly accurately although most homeless youth would have dumpster dived before risking such an obvious shop lifting. Where I have issue with this movie is this cutesy-fashionable "leave-it-up-to-the-audience" to finish the story. That, supposedly suspenseful yet incomplete, writing style works only rarely in literature and has no resemblance to reality - everything has a naturally occurring beginning and an end. The audience shouldn't be creating endings for someone else's beginnings. If we did then we might as well write the whole story....more info
- The World Has No Heart and Wendy Knows It
Wendy (Michelle Williams)and her dog Lucy are making their way to Ketchikan to work in a cannery. When Wendy stops in an Oregon town, her car breaks down and she looses Lucy. I'll just say up front, this movie is difficult. You don't know what it is to be on your own until you watch Wendy and Lucy. Homeless, dogless, carless, jobless, friendless and more or less without a family that cares.
Some reviewers have complained about the minimlist style of this film. Wendy's backstory isn't explained and it left some viewers unsatisfied. I loved the fact that this very clean film isn't muddied with expository background. Wendy doesn't have a solid future and no ties to her past-so why take the viewer backward or forward? It was very effective for the screen writer to force the viewer to simply sit with Wendy and live the moments of her life as she was living them.Wendy is just passing through town and we are just passing through her life. Is it more important to know why she ended up where she is or is it enough to just focus on what it's like to be her?
A fantastic story and newly added to my list of favourite films.
I highly recommend that fans of this film read the excellent Timbuktu: A Novel and watch the Australian film Somersault about a girl in similar circumstances....more info
- Is It Just About a Girl and Her Dog?
When a story is referred to as a Slice of Life, I usually take it with a grain of salt because the term is often used so generically. What exactly does Slice of Life mean? I think it means that the story is simple, direct, and realistically represented, with very little attention given to dramatic enhancements. "Wendy and Lucy" works on those levels, so I guess calling it a Slice of Life film would be accurate. What intrigues me is that it's a deeply heartfelt movie that doesn't beat you over the head with obvious heartfelt elements; there are no tragic death scenes or lovelorn pleas, nor is there a sweeping musical score that's mostly made up of strings. It's a character study that intentionally reveals as little as possible; director/co-writer Kelly Reichardt wisely chose to let the course of events speak for the characters. It's relies on small, quiet moments of drama rather than a series of contrived, overblown occurrences.
On the surface, there isn't much to analyze or even describe. Wendy (Michelle Williams) has left her home in Indiana to find work all the way up in Alaska. After her car breaks down in the middle of Oregon, she loses her beloved dog, Lucy, a loyal Golden Retriever mix. She then spends the rest of the film trying to find Lucy, all the while having to deal with a dwindling cash supply, which wasn't all that large to begin with.
I'm reminded of an episode of "The Jack Benny Program" in which Benny appeared on a panel show with two other people. The host asked them about the significance of Ernest Hemingway's "The Old Man and the Sea." The two guests felt that the story was a profound example of man's struggle against nature. Benny felt that it was just about an old man that went fishing. Some will see "Wendy and Lucy" and think it's just about a girl and her dog. Maybe it is, although I tend to doubt it. Wendy is a character I cared deeply about, and this is despite the fact that I knew virtually nothing about her. Somehow, I don't think I'd be able to care if the plot was the extent of the film's depth; there must have been something lying beneath the layers, something that allowed me to look past the stark, subdued nature of the story.
That being said, I'm not sure what that something is. Maybe it's a simple matter of not wanting to see Wendy lost and alone in such a lifeless town, where people speak to her in as few words as possible. Then again, it's quite possible that she was lost and alone to begin with; the circumstances that led to her leaving Indiana are never discussed, but a brief conversation with her sister and her sister's husband hints that she was never close to them. It could also be that the town itself is symbolic of the dead zone in her life. I'm speculating, of course, although there's evidence to support it. Consider the fact that she can't bring herself to spend her money on simple things like a motel room; she would rather sleep in her car and freshen herself in the bathroom of mechanic's garage. It's one thing to save your money--it's another thing to deny yourself access to basic amenities.
Most of the people Wendy runs into are lethargic, monotone, and dull, the unfortunate products of the town they grew up in. When Wendy is busted for shoplifting, even the stocker didn't sound convinced by his own assertion that the store has to set an example. She then meets the local mechanic (Will Patton), who's not interested in her car troubles and gives her the usual spiel about how much such and such a part will cost her. He pauses to take a call from his bookie, and even then, he sounds detached. Wendy also encounters a homeless man when she makes the mistake of deciding to sleep in the woods; it was hard to see him in the darkness, although I heard every word of his truthful but frightening speech about why he hates people.
There is, in fact, only one character that Wendy gets along with: An old, lonely security guard who never tells Wendy his name (Wally Dalton). While he doesn't do much in the way of getting to know her, he's compelled to help her out by letting her use his cell phone for periodic calls to the local dog pound. This may or may not be the film's only attempt at contrived drama. The reason I'm not sure is because the security guard is, in most respects, just as dead inside as everyone else living in that town; he stands alone outside a building that no one ever seems to go into, so it's possible he sees Wendy only as someone to talk to. Then again, would someone in need of human contact even consider lending out his cell phone? From my point of view, that seems like an actual friendly gesture.
It would seem that a lot of "Wendy and Lucy" is open to interpretation. The only clear aspect is the relationship between the title characters, which is the sole driving force of the plot. But does there need to be anything more? After all, the film does have a definite beginning, middle, and end, and this is despite the fact that there's so little emphasis on character development or even basic narrative exposition. And somehow, we're made to care for Wendy, a troubled young woman who only wanted to get to Alaska with her dog. The fact that we don't know where she came from or where she'll end up may not be all that satisfying, but hey, that's what you get from a Slice of Life....more info
- Slow moving, but engrossing...
Wendy is passing through a small Oregon town with her dog, Lucy. She's trying to get to Alaska to make some money. She sleeps in her car until it breaks down. Thus begins a depressing chain of events for Wendy. First, she shoplifts some dog food, is then arrested, and has to leave her dog behind. When Wendy comes back to where Lucy was left, she is gone. She has to pay bail to get out, when she never had much money to begin with. It would have been easier just to pay for the dog food. While her car is being worked on, she has nowhere to sleep. And so on.
Most of the movie has Wendy searching for Lucy. You may think at first glance that it wouldn't hold your interest. On the contrary, even though Wendy wasn't the most likable character, and you don't even know much about her, I was rooting for her to find Lucy. My boyfriend even asked me to fast forward it, so he could find out if she found her dog. It reminded me of similar movies, such as Ruby in Paradise or Into the Wild where there are only a few characters interacting with each other, but the main actor/actress carries the film.
There was sadness and beauty in the simplicity of the film. Even the way it was filmed made you feel lonely somehow. The ending made me cry, because I could feel the love that Wendy felt for Lucy, and it made me want to help her.
Would I recommend it to people? Yes, but only those that have the patience for a movie like this. It's not for everyone. But, if you can look beyond the simple story, you might find a treasure. ...more info
- Williams shines in underwritten part
In the almost aggressively noncommercial "Wendy and Lucy," Michelle Williams plays Wendy Carroll, a cash-strapped young woman who's driving from Indiana to Alaska in search of a job. Riding shotgun with her is a yellow German Shepard mix by the name of Lucy, the most reliable and trustworthy companion any drifter could possibly wish for. Wendy's situation goes from bad to worse when the beat-up `88 Honda Accord she's driving breaks down in a small town in Oregon and, not long after, Lucy herself goes missing. Wendy spends a sizable portion of the movie simply searching for the dog, while she endeavors to survive on an ever-dwindling supply of cash.
That's about all the "plot" there is to "Wendy and Lucy," which is more of a stripped-down, slice-of-life mood piece than an actual drama. Writers Jonathan Raymond and Kelly Reichardt focus almost exclusively on the moment-by-moment struggles Wendy goes through as she attempts to make her way through the world, sans money and virtually all meaningful contact with other human beings. Director Reichardt recounts Wendy's plight with an air of noncommittal detachment, allowing the drama to arise organically out of the simple observation of daily life. There isn't even a musical score to help heighten the drama or tug at the heartstrings.
While I admire what Raymond and Reichardt are attempting to do in "Wendy and Lucy," the fact of the matter is that the movie is almost too "small" for its own good (even in its running time, a mere 80 minutes). Without a sufficient back story to help explain how Wendy ended up in this predicament - and what, if anything, she is running away from - the movie fails to register the kind of emotional and psychological impact it might have had we gotten to know Wendy better. As it is, she remains an intriguing but frustratingly superficial character throughout.
There is, however, one very good reason for checking out "Wendy and Lucy," and that is the tour de force performance by Williams, an actress who, up to this point, has done extraordinarily fine work in secondary roles (the most noteworthy being Heath Ledger's wife in "Brokeback Mountain"), but who has never been called upon to "carry" a whole feature film on her own - until now. The good news is that she proves herself more than equal to the task, imbuing Wendy with a believable amalgam of strengths and vulnerabilities, along with an innate intelligence that serves the character well in the situation in which she finds herself. Williams is richly complemented by Wally Dalton as a compassionate bank guard who offers Wendy the hand of friendship when she needs it most.
Stripped down to the barest essentials of dramaturgy and filmmaking, "Wendy and Lucy" is an "art film" in both the best and worst senses of that term. ...more info
- Beautiful Movie...
It is an almost gentle intrusion into the life of the female character played so competently by the immensely talented Williams. The director scores heavily with not only Williams but with the rest of the cast too. The actors enacting the security man and car-mechanic/owner roles bring home some powerful performances. It is so natural that it becomes surreal; I would easily tag this director as a great student of Satyajit Ray - another champion of underdogs!! Best Movie of 2008 - actually Williams did a better job than her former (and dead) BF in Dark Knight ( yawn!!)...more info
- Simple, quiet, and beautiful
Wendy and Lucy is a gentle, quiet film about a woman down on her luck with no safety net.
The story is simple - girl needs job, car breaks down, girl can't find her dog. It is a mundane story told in a powerful way, using striking landscapes, natural sounds, and actors who melt into their characters perfectly. It does what every film should do, it heightens reality into something poetic....more info
- Avoid at all costs
I had the misfortune of seeing this film last night. I really loved Old Joy, but after seeing this movie with my girlfriend I had to apologize to her for taking us to see it. It is truly awful. Oldham's in it for about 60 seconds, and his part is just silly. The rest of the movie has the simplest of storylines, and a main character about whom we know nothing and care even less.
While Old Joy was a fantastic, easy going exploration into middle class American friendship during the Bush era, Wendy and Lucy is worse than watching an unemployment queue for an hour and twenty minutes. At least the unemployment queue is full of people trying to get work, rather than endlessly wallowing in self-pity. Great films this year like Frozen River or The Wrestler maturely handle American poverty issues with much greater respect, sympathy and realism, while this film seems content letting its main character beat her head against a wall for 80 minutes doing nothing to improve her situation.
Everything I liked about Old Joy was completely absent....more info
Let me first say after I saw this film, I had to think about it and digest what was going on, before I knew what I thought about it. My initial reaction was a feeling of indifference. I liked and didn't like the characters. More later. "Wendy and Lucy" is a slow-moving, character-study film. IT REQUIRES PATIENCE. There's not a heck of a lot of dialogue so you have to read between the lines. It's simple and spare storytelling--much like in the style of Hemingway. It's essentially about a girl who is trying to find her American Dream in Alaska. She feels once she gets there, her life will get better. She reminded me of the guy in "Into the Wild" and Tom Joad in "The Grapes of Wrath." However, this is not a road movie. The whole film takes place in a suburb of Portland, Oregon. She has one mishap happen after another: her car breaks down, she gets arrested for shoplifting, she loses her dog--you get the picture. For the greater part of the film, she is searching for her dog. This may wear on the patience of some viewers. Hang in there. All I can say is this film is not about what happens at the end but rather--how it gets there. Appreciate and understand how Wendy reacts and behaves because I think that is the key to understanding the film. Now let me talk about my feelings of indifference to the characters. At first I thought the security guard at Walgreen's was a jerk because he was sorta like "evicting" Wendy from the parking lot. I thought, what harm was she doing sleeping in her car in the parking lot? It wasn't as if they needed her parking space because there were a sleuth of cars waiting around the corner. But then he tried to help her find her dog and I thought differently of him. The same thing goes for the auto mechanic. At first I thought he was trying to rip her off, but then he proposed a more than fair deal to her regarding her car. I even felt indifferent to Wendy. I thought she was kinda stupid to sleep alone in a deserted park at night. Wasn't she afraid of some crazy people coming up to her? And sure enough--someone did. But then I saw other signs of her that showed how responsible she was, such as keeping track of how much money she spent, etc. So what did I think of this movie? I liked it very much. It is one of the best films of the year, and Michelle Williams turns in one of her best performances to date. She should win the Oscar for Best Actress. She is the main reason why I liked this film so much. The Wendy character is a complex role. She has shades of being a hippie from the '60s: independent and free-spirited. Yet, she's also practical and resourceful like someone from the Great Depression. I liked how there was a "liberal" and "conservative" side to Wendy. Is the director foreshadowing our President-elect in light of his recent nominations for his Cabinet?...more info
- Did she make it to Alaska?
Independent film maker Kelly Reichardt takes a tough but tender look at the people in America who are one sickness or accident away from personal catastrophe. Wendy and her dog Lucy are stranded in a depressing mill town in Oregon after leaving Indiana for a better life in Alaska. She's frugal and resourceful, recording her expenditures in a spiral notebook. She sleeps in her car, collects cans and bottles for spare change, and freshens up in gas station bathrooms. She observes to a security guard who's befriended her that you can't get a job without an address or phone, to which he replies: "Heck, you can't get an address without an address, or a job without a job. It's all rigged." Minor infractions with rule-keeping bureaucrats reap major consequences. When Wendy's twenty-year old car needs a $2,000 repair, we find her in the last scene hopping a train. But for where? She's a person like many people in America who have no past and no future, and who are going nowhere, both literally and figuratively. Even Lucy's fate is not what we expected....more info
- Wendy and Lucy
Michelle Williams is wonderful as Wendy, a young woman on her way to Alaska to find a job at a cannery, with her beautiful dog Lucy. Strapped for cash in a small town somewhere in Oregon, a series of unfortunate events begin to make Wendy's already difficult trip nearly unbearable. One bad thing leads to another, and another, and another, but none seem over the top or implausible. In fact, doesn't that seem to be the way things go? Once one thing goes wrong it is so easy, and likely, for everything else to follow.
I will not give any plot points away, even though so many have been disclosed on the packaging itself! The film is sad and poetic. It is relatable and touching, without being obvious or sappy.
This short film is full of the mundane life experiences that help us grow, but they are shone to us in an extraordinary way. Great shots of the railways and grainy shots of Wendy and Lucy make this film visually appealing.
I truly enjoyed this film, especially because I could feel for Wendy from the start (an amazing portrayal by Michelle Williams who immediately disappeared into Wendy ... which might be because of that dark, saturating pixie do). Recommended....more info
- A heartbreaking portrayal of true suffering...
Sometimes simple can say so much, and that is the case with this independent gem. `Wendy and Lucy' quite simple tells the story of Wendy and Lucy, a young woman and her dog. Wendy is virtually homeless, sleeping in her car as she makes her way to Alaska where she feels her life will be better. Lucy is her faithful `yellow gold' dog who sticks by her side and proves to be the only sunlight in Wendy's life. The film opens with Wendy and Lucy walking through the woods playing fetch as a consistent and almost tranquil hum embeds itself in our ears and it is that simple imagery that tells us all we need to know about Wendy.
Without Lucy, she is lost.
The film doesn't have much plot depth, for it can be summed up in one sentence:
"Wendy loses Lucy and desperately tries to find her."
Trying to cast the film off as nothing more than that though is a shame, since despite the shallow plot points the film has such rich depth of character here. The real story is not Wendy's attempt to find Lucy but WHY Wendy must find Lucy. There is a statement on the back of the DVD that makes the accusation that the reason this film has an R rating is that censors don't want children to realize that people are lonely and that life is not always peachy. Well, honestly, this film is rated R for the F-words that are spoken (sure, there aren't a LOT, but there are more than 3); but I think that there lies some truth in that statement as well. We (and by we, I mean the general adult public) try so hard today to shield our children from pain that we don't prepare them enough for the actuality of that said pain. When they come face to face with the harsh realities of the world outside they may, sadly, be unable to cope with it. I'm not saying that allowing your children to watch this particular film is going to help them be better able to tackle life's eventual hard-times, but I do feel that more films like this need to be made, with a lighter rating (no need for the language at all here) in order to instill in children the need for a thick skin in this often grim society.
Life is not always peachy; in fact, it rarely ever is.
Michelle Williams is a revelation here, sinking so far into her character that she becomes in recognizable. The way her face contorts when she is hearing the worst news ever (just watch the way she crumbles with subtlety when she is hearing about her car) is just so soul reaching. She is the opposite of showy but she never fails to touch us. We understand why she needs to find Lucy because we can see in her eyes, in her mannerisms, in her voice that this dog is all she has left to hold onto. There are few films that require an actor or actress to carry every scene, and when that film comes along it takes a special actress to actually do just that.
Michelle Williams does JUST that.
The film is not going to be for everyone. With the simple plot progression some will find this boring, but that is a shame in my opinion. These small films are very important in getting to understand ourselves inside and out. `Wendy and Lucy' has been hailed as one of the best films of 2008, and I agree wholeheartedly. It is a story that will touch your heart with its honesty and sincerity. `Marley and Me' may have been a sweet and touching story of a family touched by the life of a dog, but `Wendy and Lucy' is an even more honest and poignant depiction of the deep-seated need for friendship and loyalty in ones life; even if it's from a dog....more info
- Draggy and Sad
A kind of draggy but sympathetic story of a young attractive woman and her dog as they meet hard times and encounter very disheartening down-on-your luck experiences. Since this film is very slow moving, one must rely on the fast forward button to get through time consuming scenes of inactivity....more info
- Simple Story Packs a Punch
'Wendy and Lucy' is the story of a young woman who, while traveling from Indiana to Alaska in hopes of a new life, gets stranded in Portland, Oregon, and loses her dog, Lucy. It's a timely story of loneliness and sacrifice directed expertly by Kelly Reichardt and acted beautifully by Michelle Williams, whose screen presence is overwhelmingly vulnerable. While many may accuse this film of being too nuanced or too quiet to the point of boredom, I implore you to see it for yourself. It's not like this is a silent film. There is dialogue, and it isn't even sparse. Whenever there is no dialogue, the film is still involving all the way up to its heartbreaking final scene. I honestly had no expectations going into this film. I like Michelle Williams and thought it'd be an interesting film to say the least. I was wrong-so wrong-it's way more than that. There hasn't been a film that has made me sob, not just tear up but sob like a baby, in a LONG time, maybe ever. This is one film that will stay with you long after it ends.
So, do you have one hour and fifteen minutes? I know you do. Do yourself a favor and experience 'Wendy and Lucy.'...more info
- Strong performance from Williams, but to what end?
This is the other movie I watched on the plane ride (on a double feature with Nick and Norah). Wonderfully depressing movie, about a aimless loner with no money, no job and no personality. I had a hard time feeling empathy for the lead character, which means I had hard time liking this film. Michelle Williams does a terrific job conveying the desperation and loneliness of Wendy's life, and her minimilist acting is pitch-perfect for the role. I wish I could swap her out with Jolie in the 'Changeling' - one is a great movie with a decent actress, while this is a mediocre film with a great performance....more info