Land – Robin Wright Goes it Almost Alone

Robin Wright very astutely and adroitly negotiated a position behind the camera as “House of Cards” became successful. Scrutiny of the credits on other shows reveals similar strategies.

For Wright, that experience in the director chair for those episodes has paid off with “Land.” As Edee, Wright lights out for the mountains, for reasons that only unfold over the course of the 90 minute running time. Shot in less than a month, Wright apparently took the lead role in front of the camera out of scheduling necessity.

The script by Jesse Chatham and Erin Dignam likely contains less than a few pages of dialogue. Anyone coming to this film expecting a dialogue-heavy production will be disappointed, this is decidedly not an Aaron Sorkin film.

Invariably, we see lots of tasteful cutaways of lovely scenes of nature: mountains, streams, clouds, sky, deer, lightning, sunsets, moonrise, trees, snow, icicles. This is a perfect film for the Sundance Film Festival, especially given the mountainous setting.

The majority of the sparse dialogue is delivered via flashback, which we constantly await to give us the why of the story.

Before too long the idyllic goal of her escape confronts the reality of nature. Flashbacks indicate she has more than a clue about being far from civilization, but soon nature is overwhelming her. Edee has stockpiled Dinty Moore canned provisions, but they are quickly insufficient; rabbits and deer become necessities.

Despite Edee’s seeming insistence on being left alone, she discovers that perhaps endless solitude is not the same as eternal loneliness.

Gently plucked strings and mournful fiddle from Ben Sollee evoke the tone poem that the film ultimately becomes.

Trailer available here.

Brad Auerbach has been a journalist and editor covering the media, entertainment, travel and technology scene for many years. He has written for Forbes, Time Out London, SPIN, Village Voice, LA Weekly and early in his career won a New York State College Journalism Award.