Nomadland

Nomadland ★★★★

So, Nomadland IS showing at LFF, but the screenings are all sold out. Now because of the way the BFI handles ticketing, I might still get a ticket from the ones that are held back for release on the day of the screening, but, obviously, this is a risk. So... I realised it was showing virtually at Hamptons International Film Festival and I quickly snapped up a slot. Now, once again obviously, it’s only viewable from inside the US, which is where my old friend Nord VPN came in very handy. Is this shady? Yes. But it is a slim slice of shady, as I did pay the $15 dollars that it cost to view the film and I didn’t rip the ticket out of some poor American hand (I hope). And I'm still trying to get that ticket, so I might still see it at LFF.

I don’t even know where to start with Nomadland. I’ve got so many thoughts I just want to spew out. I don’t normally write long reviews, but I got a feeling it’s going to be a long one, so if you stick with it and read it all, thank you so much!

The film it reminds me most of - and this is truly bizarre - is Borat. It’s not even particularly like Borat, it’s just... It’s unlike every film I’ve ever seen. I’m racking my brain for something like it, and I just can’t think of anything. And that's incredible.

It's a film you can’t look away from. Zhao uses these long tracking shot with naturalistic cinematography, which it gives this almost documentary feel; like we're not even watching fiction. It's one of the best examples of a narrative film that feels utterly real. Heartbreaking, thought-provoking. Earnest. All adjectives that apply to this - dare I say it - masterpiece.

And then, of course, there is Frances McDormand. Is McDormand the best actress of all time? Erm... yeah, quite possibly. She just doesn't ever give a bad performance. Seriously, this might be her best performance of all time. She is just so eminently watchable: absolutely captivating. It would be easy for a film like this to get lost in its own meandering looseness, if it weren't for such a powerhouse turn anchoring it down. Easily, and I mean easily, the best performance I've seen since... probably McDormand and Sam Rockwell in Three Billboards.

Is this film going to win Best Picture? Look, it's way too early to say. Really, it's ridiculously early. Do you know how late the Oscars are this year? But what I can say with absolute certainty, is that if this wins Best Picture, you will be hearing no complaints from me.

The one thing I will say is that I need to watch it again because I think a rewatch will tell me if this is one of the best films of the year or one of the best films of the decade; but for right now, I’m happy with it just being one of the best films of the year.

TL;DR - pretty fucking amazing

2020 New Releases ranked (Nomadland is right up there)

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