Did you ever think, what would you do when the electricity went off, also no gas on gas stations, and no food in the stores? Would you survive this? For years Hollywood has given us so many post-apocalyptic movies. There were zombies, future world after rebellion where people live like in Orwell’s 1984, and many others. I finally found something different, the Canadian idea for that kind of scenario. I’m talking here about Into the Forest, directed by Patricia Rozema, screenplay based on Jean Hegland’s novel.
The movie is set in the near future, follows the story of two sisters, Nell (Ellen Page) and Eva (Evan Rachel Wood) who’s living, in a house hidden away in the woods, with their father, Robert. Nell is focused on her studies and Eva is training to be a dancer, not a survival type of girls. All of that changes one day when the power mysteriously goes out. At first, this seems to be just a minor annoyance, but not only does it never come back on. Whereas at first the family bond together and try to make the most of their difficult circumstances, as time goes on, the challenges become more serious. The sisters must work together in order to survive in their increasingly treacherous new world.
Of course, director introduce a couple of other characters. It’s Eli, Nell’s boyfriend and Stan, a weird guy from the store, whose latter appearance is unwelcome. But Rozema focus on sisters, they still want to satisfy their wants as individuals, even though they have to make sacrifices in order to survive as a unit.
The story itself is really powerful, it’s made you think what would you do in that kind of situation, would you fight, would you give up? Adding to the power of the story are the performances from Page and Wood. Those two actresses playing to their strengths, Ellen, who’s pose as a strong and pragmatic Nell while Evan is the dreamer and not that strong Eva, but as the story progresses and circumstances change, they find new dimensions to the characters. Page brings an unexpected vulnerability to Nell without sacrificing her strength while Wood, gives Eva the determination, which would hardly expect from her.
I really enjoyed the dynamic of this movie, it was slow visual style, which gives harms to the film. We can see beautiful shots, beauty of the nature. It’s also great chosen music, which matches perfectly to the scenes.
I’m waiting for more of post-apocalyptic movies from Canada. It’s a great alternative to those huge, Hollywood movies with tons of special effects. Rozema showed, that you don’t need so much money to do such an amazing movie. Give Into the Forest a shot, it’s the kind of film that will not only stick with you, it will even make you think.