Nomadland ★★★★

This is certainly a fine film, though I don't think I'm quite as enamored with it as everyone else seems to be. I'm particularly puzzled by everyone heralding Frances McDormand for her ability to blend in with the rest of the "non-actor"-comprised cast. Out of all of the major reputable actors working today, she certainly blends in better than anyone else I could imagine, but it's still hard for me to see her as anyone other than Frances McDormand playing a part. If anything, it's kind of odd to see her acting alongside random people talking about their lives on the road.

This isn't in any way knocking her performance, which is lovely. Just coming from someone who's seen more than their fair share of indie dramas with no-name casts, it's strange to see Hollywood so desperately clinging to this idea that McDormand is somehow able to shed her celebrity skin entirely for this role. She's still the woman who's already won two Oscars and has been working in the industry for over three decades, and nothing's ever gonna change that. And that's okay. Seems to me to be the kind of language crafted by executives and insiders to create a dialogue for the Oscar campaign more than anything else.

Nonetheless, Nomadland is certainly a satisfying film, and if its success leads more people to seek out calm, quiet films like these, then I'm fully on board. Its photography and editing are particularly attractive, and I especially appreciate its attempts to start necessary and valuable conversations about homelessness and classism.

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Jeffrey liked this review