Kelly Reichardt's Night Moves centers around Josh, an environmentalist devoted to protecting the Earth from corporate greed. He is a very private person, working on an organic farm. Josh recruits Harmon and Dena, two fellow environmentalits, to help concot a plan to raise awareness about energy resources. Dedicated to the cause, the three of them execute an extreme protest that involves blowing up a hydroelectric damn - a symbol of the energy-sucking industrial culture they despise. Kelly Reichardt's Night Movies is an extremely well crafted meditation on the consequences of our actions, examining whether our convictions are good enough to demand illegal or harmful actions. Even though the story is centered around environmentalism, Reichardt is not interested in making any type of political statement. She is simply exploring idealism at its core, questioning how far it can go before becoming dangerous to oneself and those around them. Ths is a film that very much aims for the head, not the gut, with its drama, crafting a fascinating and intelligent dissection of idealism. The direction in Night Moves is exceptional, with Reichardt using visuals to flesh out the larger themes of the story. One of my favorite examples oft his being when the three environmentalists arrive at the lake with their boath. Reichardt gives the whose sequence leading up to the detonation an ominous tone, juxtaposing innocent children and families playing on the river with our three environmentalists intent on destroying the damn. Night Movies is well acted, shot, and written, a film that The East wishes it could be, delivering an impressive examination of what happens to someone's idealism when they are backed into a corner.
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