Thursday, February 19, 2015

WILD - 2 nominations

Actress in a Leading Role - Reese Witherspoon
Actress in a Supporting Role - Laura Dern

Wild is the story of a woman absorbed in grief over the loss of her mother who becomes seriously self destructive and makes dangerous choice after dangerous choice.  Sexual promiscuity and drug abuse become central to her life story, until she decides that she must go on a journey of over 1000 miles hiking the Pacific Crest Trail.  She is relatively unprepared and sincerely unqualified to make this journey - especially alone - and through a series of very lucky coincidences and support from fellow hikers, she not only survives the journey but finds herself.

There is a strange tension in the film wherein she often seems on the verge of being raped that makes it hard to focus on the storyline.  That aside though, the movie was very compelling, and it almost feels like we are partnering with her on her journey.

Laura Dern is the real standout in this film.  It is interesting to juxtapose that it was only last year that Dern's father was nominated for an outstanding performance in Nebraska which he did not win, and that Dern is nominated for an outstanding performance for Wild, which she will likely not win.  In both cases, the recognition is absolutely deserved.

Reese Witherspoon was very good, as she always is, and I suspect that any really good actress like her would be nominated for this role because of how grueling it appears to be to pull off.  I'm a fan of Witherspoon's, and I generally think she picks good projects.  In this case, she truly selected this one, having optioned the book before it was even published.

Overall,  a really good solid film.

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