Friday, 10 March 2017

Certain Women, Simple Life

Certain Women (2016) is a drama which offers a glimpse into four women's lives in Montana. It features Kristen Stewart and Lily Gladstone who plays the role of a rather lost ranch hand - whilst Michelle Williams and Laura Dern play even more contrasting roles to Lily, they are women in control in a town which doesn't seem to have any element of rushing. 

The scenic shots of the American Northwest feel more like pictures than in motion. The film is very slow paced and offers a glimpse into people's lives - there is no ‘spectacle’ as such like most Hollywood films. To me it feels almost though someone is telling a story but emphasising the minor details of the plot. We are left waiting for more.

The characters seem quite isolated and withdrawn from Native American life except for Jamie (Lily Gladstone) who seems as though life is almost passing her by. There's almost a sense that she is blending in with her background of gentle landscapes. 

The film resonates with me because I couldn't imagine such a simplistic life. Certain Women really gives an insight into the way people live in Montana, this dedramatisation of narrative leaves us with questions that we realise we can probably answer ourselves.

Whilst watching the film we are waiting for the next thing to happen - something that is usually fulfilled in mainstream cinema. The simple dialogue allows for the images and emblems to tell the story instead of big dramatic plot points.

My final thoughts are that this film like most, certainly isn’t for everyone and to each person will mean something else, some may see it as a work of art and some depressingly dull. The film shows audiences a different life, a very simplistic and mostly lonely life. If it wasn't for the technology used by characters you may think you have been taken back to a more modest time. As a viewer you almost forget about the materialistic society in which we live because this seems so far detached.

Iona Francis
6th Form Ambassador

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