Movie: Winter’s Bone
What it’s up for: Best picture, actress (leading), actor (supporting), writing (adapted screenplay)

But seriously…has anyone heard of this movie before the award season started?

Lionsgate produced this movie and it feels very indie-ish…in a great way. I love indie films. It’s about a 17 year old girl named Ree living in backwoods Missouri who is taking care of her two younger siblings and her mother who has some sort of mental illness. Her dad has been in and out of jail for awhile for dealing drugs and at the beginning of the movie he’s not there. “The law” comes looking for him and tells Ree that if her dad doesn’t show up for his court date, the government is going to come take their house (which is really the only thing she has). The movie is about her going to her various family members trying to find him.

That description doesn’t really do the film justice, but that’s basically what it is. It’s well-written and well-casted. Jennifer Lawrence who plays Ree is up for best leading actress and it’s obvious why. She plays her character well. Ree seems emotionless on the outside but even in her monotone speech, you can read different emotions. John Hawkes (up for supporting actor) plays her uncle Teardrop and he is superb. Creepy but still a protagonist.

The plot itself is kind of confusing. But then it gets to parts where it all makes sense and it makes it really good. There are a few important points that you’re left to your imagination to figure out, which may be what they were aiming for. The writing in general was good. I especially found Ree’s lines to her siblings to be really interesting and helped tie together a lot of the plot.

Side note: I was super excited to see that the dad from the show “Raising Hope” was playing the sheriff. He did a great job too.

I think it’s unlikely that it will win anything it’s up for. No doubt it was one of the token indie films for the BP category. The writing was good and may win as a surprise. The acting awards will go towards more popular actors, most likely. Especially when they’re up against Geoffrey Rush and Natalie Portman.

*UPDATE* After more than a week, I’m still thinking about this movie. And liking it more and more the more I think about it.