Saturday, July 4, 2015

Night Moves (2013)

Director: Kelly Reichardt
Writers:  Jonathan Raymond, Kelly Reichardt
Cast:       Jesse Eisenberg, Dakota Fanning, Peter Sarsgaard

Three radical environmentalists look to execute the protest of their lives: the explosion of a hydroelectric dam. I went into the film without knowing anything about it and the plot is revealed very gradually in a slow-burn fashion which I very much enjoyed. 

First half of the film is very good and you root for them to complete the bombing and escape, but, the second half is bit of a letdown. One of the three, stereo-typically the lady in it, find it hard to cope when she learns that a camper died due to the flooding caused by dam explosion. Really, is that it?!! I guess we are kind of de-sensitized to all these terrorist atrocities these days and one death seems too insufficient to make someone repent their actions. Also, in this era of suicide bombers, we kind of expect them to die and not worry too much about their escape plan. Maybe, that is exactly what the film is going for to show that these are very idealized people who thought they were doing something grand and when they realized that fuck all was achieved, they kind of lost it. The rest of the film is the usual mistrust between the three of them with the two men fearing that the lady will rat them out and leads to predictable outcomes. The ending of it was also a bit fresh without any resolution and that part I liked. It is trying to do what 'The American' did for assassin-procedurals but doesn't quite pull it off. Nevertheless it is a good watch. 

I was kind of reminded of the German film 'The Edukators' which I highly recommend as a stylized entertaining watch. It also featured three radicals, whose agenda was anti-capitalism, spreading chaos by breaking in and vandalizing rich people's houses. The second half of the film features them three in hiding in a secluded location after a kidnap and the changes in relationship dynamics between the three. Structure and plot is not similar but it did remind me of that film. As for Night Moves, it is a good watch if you're into slow procedural films. Performances from all concerned are good, especially that of Eisenberg's, and the whole damp feel with exquisite locales is also perfect.

Rating: 3/5