Night Moves – movie review

Night Moves had its U.S. premier at the Tribeca Film Festival this week, and our reviewers were there in the first row.

The film starts our slowly in what appears to be a   sleepy farming community in pristine rural Oregon.  One of the characters works on a beautiful organic farm, another works on what appears to be a nudist colony for old women.

However, it soon becomes evident that these idealistic young people have taken their back to nature views to extremes. They are, in fact, environmental terrorists and plan to blow up a major dam in the area.

The group of terrorists (or idealists depending upon your point of view) is played  Dakota Fanning, Jesse Eisenberg and Peter Sarsgaard.

These three extraordinary actors each bring unique points of view to their characters. You get to know them, but the film still leaves as a mystery exactly why each one has chosen this radical path. They never really completely open up about themselves, even with each other.

The film was directed by Kelly Reichardt who was on hand to answer questions from the audience after the film.  Since the premier was at 3 PM on a Thursday, she started her remarks by saying, “I am glad to see that the fans of Night Moves are all unemployed.”

Kelly is not at all what you would expect from a movie director. She is very petite and with a soft voice seemed actually shy in front of the audience. She spoke about how it had taken two years just to scout for all the locations in the movie. She noted that the extras were all real farmers which made it very challenging to direct.  As she spoke, we realized how nerve racking it must be for a director to spend years of her life on a film and then have to sit and wait to see if the audience loves it or hates it.

Unfortunately, the first audience comment came from a large imposing Russian man with a full black beard who expressed his disappointment in the way the movie ended. Without giving anything away we will say that the ending is more “artistic” and less “Hollywood” than some audiences may like.

However, we thought the film was great, and do recommend it.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.