Wendy and Lucy

Wendy and Lucy ★★★

Wendy may get off on the wrong foot with some viewers, myself included, though it’s not like you can totally condemn her. She’s on the wrong foot with life when we join up with her; suffering the harsh realities of a cross-country road trip lacking in any sort of responsibility to ground you at home.

By the end of the film, I came around on her, and I continue to wonder if it were the point. The circumstances in which she loses Lucy are sticking points for me in an otherwise wilted poverty drama; it seems like the narrative trick here is to inject a canine companion in a story that you’d struggle to pay attention to if it didn’t include such an emotional ace-in-the-hole like a lost dog. I don’t totally condemn the choice, it just makes me wonder: why this story? Why here? This character?

The film also seems to be going for the weightless feeling of not belonging to the town you currently inhabit, with no possibility of going back and only vague ideas of moving on. It’s arresting enough for anything to flirt with this kind of homelessness, and the film captures the struggle, the absurdity of not having a bed to sleep on at night. Being left to fend for yourself with no kind of safety net. Suddenly you see the world around you from a different perspective.

Wendy And Lucy is a mild encapsulation of these things, emphasis on “mild”. Its narrative arc will come to at close in a way that some will tear up at, but others may see its mechanical intentions. Others still may have been wishing for it all along. Either way, you’ll be as aimless as the film itself. That’s something to experience.