LFF 2020: ‘Nomadland’ – Film Review – Filmhounds

A review of Chloe Zhao’s latest drama, starring Frances McDormand.

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Before we see Chloe Zhao’s take on the Marvel Cinematic Universe with the delayed Eternals (tentatively set for a November 2021 release), we are very likely to see her name very much in the mix of whatever shape this year’s awards season ends up taking. With her most recent film, filmgoers are invited into a tale of human drama that thrives on a sense of genuine emotion and relationships. If she can bring that kind of sensibility to the canvas of a Marvel blockbuster, then audiences are going to be in for a treat. 

Frances McDormand stars as Fern, a woman whose life has been greatly affected by the 2008 recession. With the economic collapse bringing an end to her life in a small corporate town in Nevada, Fern decides to hit the road in her van, exploring life as a modern-day Nomad, crossing paths with a number of people along her journey across the Great American West. 

Nomadland is very much a film that plays with the idea of narrative pretty loosely. Fern’s journey is made up of encounters with individuals played by those who actually do live the life of a Nomad, driving across the vast landscapes of the American wilderness, forging their own paths that don’t depend on small everyday luxuries many of us take for granted. It is an experience of human connection, as Fern becomes involved with the lives of the people she meets if only for the briefest moment of time. 

Full review over at Filmhounds Magazine, originally published October 16th 2020.

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