January 13, 2011
In "Winter's Bone," director Debra Granik brings us to the Missouri Ozarks, where its hillbilly inhabitants have a culture of its own. For roughly and hour and a half, we get to live the desolate and violent world in the poverty-stricken part of America we foreigners do not really get to see.
Ree Dolly is only 17 years old. However, she needs to grow up fast to take care of her two kid siblings and mentally disturbed mother, as their meth-cooking father disappears. However, Ree faces her toughest dilemma as their very home is threatened to be repossessed by the government if their father fails to show up for his trial. Ree's brave hunt for her father brings her (and us) deep into the Ozark underworld. Can she find her father in time to save their property, alive or maybe, dead?
Jennifer Lawrence is a young new actress, and she successfully carries this movie on her tender shoulders. Everything about her is authentic and natural. Her scenes where Ree teaches her siblings about squirrel- gutting and shooting a rifle were so realistic. As for the supporting cast, we really cannot tell who among the other characters were actors as everybody looked like they came from there. It is as if we are watching a documentary about life in the Ozarks. The band was performing in the living room with the pristine voice of Marideth Sisco was very memorable.
This is a movie I watched because of its Oscar buzz. This clearly is not for everybody. For those who take the time to watch it, you have to have the proper attitude and expectations. This is serious stuff and there is no definitely joking around. It is worth a watch, if only to witness the spectacular debut of Jennifer Lawrence, who seems to be on her way to earning an Oscar nomination for Best Actress.