December 5, 2014

Reese Witherspoon in WILD.

Directed by: Jean-Marc Vallée

Written by: Nick Hornby

Cast: Reese Witherspoon, Laura Dern, Thomas Sadoski, W. Earl Brown, Kevin Rankin, Michiel Huisman, Gaby Hoffman, Keene McRae

Rating: R (for sexual content, nudity, drug use, and language)

Running Time: 115 minutes

WILD, adapted from Cheryl Strayed’s best-selling memoir about redemption, is a showcase for Reese Witherspoon’s acting talents. Ms. Strayed, played by the exceptional Witherspoon, goes on a 1,100 mile hike by herself on the rugged Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) to rediscover herself after years of heroin addiction and adultery. On paper, this doesn’t seem like it would make an interesting movie—perhaps too internal to be effective on screen—but director Jean-Marc Vallée’s (DALLAS BUYERS CLUB) and screenwriter Nick Hornby make this a compelling ride, putting us in lock step with Witherspoon’s character. If I have any criticism of the film, I thought Laura Dern as the mom was a bit too chipper to be believable. That aside, this is a very good film!

Grade: A-

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