No surprise for me really that The Rover was included. So underrated and underseen is an understatement and I get that they are talking about the US, but I have to weigh in with Australia as well because not only was the release limited, but so were the sessions and that’s the part that annoys me. You can’t blame the distributor for that because it really is up to the individual cinemas who paid to screen the film. Unless you were a casual worker or unemployed you couldn’t get to a screening. Not even stay at home mums could go since it was school holidays during the limited release. But saying that, if you are in Sydney this weekend, don’t miss the opportunity to have one more shot at seeing it because Golden Age Cinema & Bar has included it as its 6pm film this Sunday, as we posted details here. But back to The Playlist:
I’ll be the first to admit that David Michod’s “The Rover” didn’t land with me quite as hard as it did with our reviewer out of Cannes. It was my kind of movie, sparse, minimalist, hauntingly moody, possessing a menacing slow burn to it—but I’d be lying if I said it didn’t leave me at a bit of a distance. I wanted slightly more—just one more emotional scene like the sequence with Guy Pearce’s character staring with deep wells of empathy at the caged dogs melting with heat from the Australian Outback. But perhaps more than any film this year, or at least any film that I wasn’t immediately taken with, its simmering intensity and single-minded drive has really resonated with me. A lot of that comes from the internalized rage of Guy Pearce, a performance that has become one of my favorites of the year. Now Robert Pattinson is good, but Pearce is something else; like a feral animal on a mission that cannot be stopped (and considering his recent excellent turns in “Lawless,” “Breathe In” and “Hateship, Loveship” it feels like we have a new mini Pearce renaissance on our hands). There’s a fury within the heart of “The Rover,” but it’s from a ravaged soul who’s had everything taken from him. It’s a possessed and ghostly shell of a man who will stop at nothing to properly mourn all that he has lost and loved. You cannot and will not deny that from this character. The movie really got killed in wide release, its languid rhythms and atmospheric meditations on our humanity (or lack thereof) just not built for the mainstream multiplexes and that’s a shame. Definitely make the effort to catch up with this one and give it time to marinate after it’s done.” (Rodrigo Perez)
I think David would agree with that last sentence, seeing as he has said that he never liked to discuss a film straight after seeing it but preferred to wait and talk about it the next day.
Update: I received an email from Fran last night letting me know The Rover is playing this weekend Fri at 8pm , Sat at 5.30 pm and Sunday at 1.45 pm at Mount Vic Flicks. I hear it’s a great family run cinema. Thanks Fran!