Certain Women ★★★★

When I watch Kelly Reichardt’s films, I do not see actors portraying characters, I only see real people that exist in a natural world. All of her films have this intangible earthiness and feel completely genuine. She throws absolutely no bullshit at her audience, nothing is manipulative, there is no melodrama, only straight forward slices of life, events we may have never personally experienced but still feel extremely familiar and entirely grounded in a reality we know to be true. Reichardt’s camera can tell more of a person’s story with the capture of a single glance than any number lines of fabricated dialogue could ever hope to. She makes mountains out of mole hills in her brand of storytelling, seeming banality passed through Reichardt’s hands becomes flooded with richness and intensity and endlessly fascinating.

I find myself trying to compare her to other filmmaker’s over and over again but none really come to mind. This film made by most anyone else would feel slow and boring but Reichardt crafts this so all of the stories components are operating in perfect synergy, it all just makes complete sense and is incredibly impactful. Jeff Nichols was achieving similar results in his early work but has since branched off to explore other avenues of storytelling. Reichardt’s films remind the viewer that life is happening all around us, no matter where you choose to look for it and despite the apparent lack of glamor of particular situations, it is present if you choose to see it. Even after certain focal events in certain people’s lives have transpired, life continues, life goes on. It always has and always will. Reichardt is truly a master of her medium, for contemplative explorations of the human experience that will speak to your soul, look no further.

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