This film is going to struggle to find an audience, for several reasons:
1) The main character, Nana (Jennifer Connelly) is completely
unsympathetic. She loses one child
because of her own carelessness and she abandons the other because she can deal
with her grief better by herself? She
looks down her nose at a faith healer and then becomes one?
2) The screen is filled with images of frozen tundra, and much of the
dialogue is just as chilly and remote, 3) Itís partially subtitled, but at
times they donít even bother to translate when Jannia (Melanie Laurent) speaks
French, 4) The other main character, Ivan (Cillian Murphy) seems to be able to
relate well only to his pet falcon, but weíre not nearly as enamored with
falconry as he is.
That said, itís hard not to watch the compelling intensity of Jennifer
Connelly, and the fact that her character is so unadorned just makes her
performance that much more noteworthy. And
Melanie Laurent is also very easy on the eyes, even when sheís not saying
anything, and we canít help watching her, either, even though her character is
emotionally distant, and a deceiver.
This little slice of tragedy is indeed an indie film; thereís plenty of
poignancy and artistic license here, but no humor, no romance, no special
effects, no chase scenes, no cuteness or winsomeness at all.
Itís a hard story with rough edges, and not many recreational viewers
will want to subject themselves to the malingering malaise.