Starring Leonardo DiCaprio and directed by Alejandro González Iñárritu (director of Birdman), The Revenant depicts the true legend of Hugh Glass in early 1820s. It begins with the group of fur trappers that Glass and John Fitzgerald (Tom Hardy) were in being attacked by a band of Arikara Native Americans. Glass, Fitzgerald, Glass’s native son, and only a few more trappers escape by boat. After stopping to cover their tracks, Glass walks into the wilderness and encounters a grizzly bear with two cubs. Glass is brutally mauled by the bear but manages to shoot and stab the bear to death. Hearing Glasses gunshot, the band of trappers find him barely alive with slashes all across his body and a broken foot. They decide to leave him for dead, even though he comes back from near death.
Now this is is where this movie really shines. The Revenant is one of the most visually stunning movies I’ve seen. A main emphasis of the movie is the beautiful snow covered landscapes Glass is trapped in. There is multiple still shots of the white powdered trees and mountains that was captured in Canada and Argentina. The violence of the movie is exceptionally brutal. The bear attack is extremely gruesome, showing what a bear mauling would be like if you were to survive for more than a second. The presence of Native Americans adds a mystical presence to the whole movie as well.
This is one of those kind of movies that is more of an experience than a film. Leonardo’s performance is superb, proving once again how versatile he is by playing as a long-bearded woodsman. On January 10th, The Revenant received the Golden Globe for Best Dramatic Motion Picture of 2015. I’m predicting that Leonardo will earn his first Oscar for Best Actor for his performance.