Certain Women ★★★★½

I can't believe I didn't see this when it was in the cinema - a wonderful anthology focusing on the lives of four women in Montana, in some cases butting heads with men, in others just trying to live their lives and in the case of Lily Gladstone's rancher, maybe just looking for a heart with which to connect. It's the latter, the least experienced of the lead performers, that stands out, in the performance of subtle longing - an implacable facade hiding a burning desire. That's not to say that the others are any less effective (although the Michelle Williams story is probably the least engaging) but Gladstone is outstanding, shading the always excellent Laura Dern.

Kelly Reichardt frames the story against the backdrop of rural and smalltown Montana, with interior shots (especially the stunning final one) as lovingly composed as those outside with the beauty of the mountains in the background. Reichardt continues to show she is one of the most exciting directors working in American cinema.

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