Winter’s Bone is a powerful, raw, cold journey and a true excercise in filmmaking and film watching. Set in the desolute Ozark Mountains of Missouri, the story is focused in a small, extremely poor, rural town. 17 year old Ree Dolly (amazingly played by Jennifer Lawrence) is the head of her household and caretaker of her young brother and sister. Their mother has become handicapped and mute after years of methamphetamine abuse. Their father is released from jail and puts their house and property up for his bail hearing. The problem is that he disappears. This sends Ree on a search of the town for him, because without him, they will lose what little they have. Ree tries tracking him through friends, and his drug buddies, a mistress and his own brothers. She knows what is at stake and feels the responsibility of her familys world on her very young shoulders.
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This is truly one of the best film’s of 2010. Touching for the passion this girl has inside of her to save what family she has, and heartbreaking at the gravity of the situation and the lifestyle that these people live, you can’t helped but feel a range of emotions while watching this film. From start to finish youre hands will be clenched to the seat as you wonder just how our “hero” will save her family from the impending reality that is quickly closing upon them. You forget that you’re watching a film as the acting is beautifully portrayed. You could see any of these people in any unnamed, poor mid-western town.
The cinematography is nothing short of absolutely breathtaking. Never sunny but always with a gloomy haze, the weather and landscapes reflect the desperation and depression lurking just underneath the eyes of Ree. The acting is top notch. In fact, you forget you’re watching actors portraying characters.
This is a movie that won’t make for a great pick you up – but it’s not meant to. It’s meant to tell a story and that’s exactly what it does. This is powerful film making. You want to make sure you check this film out. Be prepared to be reminded what film making is all about.