Certain Women ★★★★★

Based on the short stories of Maile Meloy, Kelly Reichardt’s thoughtful and plaintive triumvirate of loosely connected, minimalist dramas featuring resolute, independent women each dealing with very different challenges posed by the outdated attitudes, limited opportunities and emotional toll of life in the economically diminished towns and isolated wilderness of Montana. An uncommonly wise and exquisitely moving study of fortitude, grace and longing, Reichardt chronicles the personal crises of a lawyer struggling with a contentious client who finds herself at the centre of a rashly planned hostage situation, a woman marginalised by her errant husband and sullen daughter that devotes herself to the building of her dream home, and a lonely ranch hand who is attracted to the young lawyer teaching a night class at the local school, and though none build toward any grand revelations, the cumulative effect is deeply felt. Featuring fine performances by Laura Dern, Michelle Williams, Kristen Stewart and the heart-rending Lily Gladstone.

Alec liked these reviews