#Review: Nomadland

Starring Frances McDormand, Nomadland is a melancholic film about a woman who travels across America meeting many people along the way. Fern has left her home as her husband has died and the sole industry has closed down. She becomes “houseless” and while working at Amazon she learns about a nomad group. This is a type of support group for people who prefer living outside of the established norm in America. She makes many friends learning about their lives and what has brought them to this point.

See you down the road

There is a generous spirit felt throughout Nomadland. Every individual Fern meets is brimming with character and they help her whenever she needs help along the road. A fun fact about the film is that the majority of people Fern meets along the way are not actors. They are real people with real stories and it allows you to connect with them all the easier. One particular person, her name is Swankie, has a heartbreaking story and like several of the stories told throughout this film it is emotionally overwhelming.

The way director Chloé Zhao chose to direct makes the film feel like a fly on the wall documentary with Fern as our eyes and ears into this world of nomads. In between scenes of Fern meeting new friends she is travelling across America and the locations shown are breathtaking. Zhao and her team have crafted a spiritual story with a soothing and peaceful score.

Carrying the film is Frances McDormand and she is phenomenal. Fern is a fascinating individual who, though she is a loner, people immediately gravitate towards. I know I’ve spoken on it before with the other characters but there are so many scenes between Fern and another person that are just so transfixing. She speaks with a young man about love and life and their interaction felt so personal and real. You can’t help but have a tear in your eye and a smile on your face.

The film may not be for every though. It is a deliberately paced film that lets its scenes linger and wants you to take it all in. There is not a traditional narrative, there is no drama that will shock you as this is such a grounded story so those looking for something thrilling may not enjoy Nomadland. However for audiences looking for something different this is right up your alley.

Nomadland is a film that is unlike many other films out there and I highly recommend it. It comes in under 2 hours, has real people telling real stories and has a look and score to it that is breathtaking.

Nomadland will be available on Disney+ on the 30th of April. Don’t worry there will be no extra cost for this gem.

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