Nomadland

Nomadland ★★★★½

NYFF #9:

Well, as expected I loved this so much. Adds something new and original to an already deep and textured tapestry of American lives on the margins. Has the already signature documentary style that weaves together the real and the imagined, and makes the latter just as authentic. A really fascinating and intelligent adaptation of a book that must have been an immense challenge.

Zhao is so incredibly tender and considered in capturing the lives of her characters. She diverts from the book rather dramatically, but pays generous tribute to many elements from it that made it special, like Linda May's earth ship and the Rubber Tramp Rendevous. The dialogue is as rich and free and natural as the staggering landscape that frames the events, and it captures the profundity of rootlessness that was kind of the one small failure of the book. 


Frances McDormand is phenomenal. David Strathairn so sweet. The film falls into step with the real nomads so effortlessly, which is probably the highest praise I could give it.

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