Directed by Alejandro G Iñárritu, The Revenant has been nominated for twelve Oscars this year. The movie has already won three Golden Globes, for Best Motion Picture – Drama, Best Director, and Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture – Drama. Iñárritu is perhaps most well known in the US for directing Birdman which won four Oscars last year.
Leonard DiCaprio stars as the main character in The Revenant. His performance has many hoping that this will be the year that he finally wins an Oscar for Best Actor. Other well-known actors in the film include Tom Hardy, Domhnall Gleeson, and Will Poulter.
The Revenant follows the hardship-filled story of Hugh Glass. After being attacked by a bear on a fur-trading mission in the 1820s, he is left for dead by members of his expedition. Glass must then fight for his survival on the bleak, wintry frontier.
Violent and raw, the movie is filled with bloody scenes, which sometimes feel like too much. After getting mauled by a bear, Glass has a variety of life-threatening wounds. All of which are shown, often graphically, throughout the film.
Filmed primarily in Canada, the scenery in the movie was breathtaking. Scenes of snow covered mountains and vast forests make for brief moments of peace between violent scenes.
One of the most impressive aspects of the movie was the extreme environment during filming. Due to the scenes being filmed in the winter, in Canada, some days the actors only had a little over an hour of filming time.
A lot of thought went into the cinematography of the movie. Iñárritu began scouting filming locations five years before filming began.
The Revenant takes on many heavy themes. One such theme is revenge. What does revenge mean? How far are people willing to go to get revenge? And in the end, will having a brief moment of revege be worth it?
The movie also tackles the question of racism and how Native Americans have been treated throughout history. Parts of the movie revolve around an Arikara warrior who is looking for his daughter. Although there are cultural differences, there are many ways in which we are similar.
Exploitation plays a major role as well. The fur trading expedition exploits the natural world. This is an issue that is still seen today, with how humanity has treated the earth.
With issues that were relevant then, as they are now, this movie tackles many important problems. With a dedicated cast, beautiful nature scenes, and enough action to keep the movie going, this movie is sure to invite in many audiences. Visceral and suspenseful, The Revenant will keep you on the edge of your seat.