Written by Theresa Sutherland and directed by Emma Tammi, this female-centric film highlights the struggles of isolation in the unsettling frontiers of the western era. The story follows Lizzy and Isaac, a couple living in solitude. When Emma and Gideon move to the frontier Lizzie can’t decide if this is a blessing or a curse while haunted by her own past and the demonic entity that carries in the wind. With Isaac in disbelief of Lizzy’s experience with the supernatural, Lizzy battles the terrors in seclusion driving her to the brink of insanity.
Without revealing too much, the scares mostly rely on unnerving atmosphere and uncomfortable situations the main character finds herself in. The unknown is what invokes fear in the audience. To add to the horror, abrupt sound is used in abundance. At times it’s a great addition to the scare factor but it soon becomes an overkill.
Unlike audio, the dialogue is scarce in the film, but the camera work and the setting have a lot to say. Our main characters live in isolation in a gargantuan land; however, they are never alone. The location has a lot of eerie beauty to offer and the natural wind adds its own character and flair effortlessly. The stunning yet hauntingly still shots, combined with the color palette use, contribute to the unsettling nature of the film.
While the cinematography and the directing are nearly flawless, at times the story tends to drag on a bit. The saving grace is the nonlinear format of storytelling since it is meticulous about how much information is put on display at a time, slowly unveiling the story. No time is wasted diving into the story though; the movie starts with the very tragic event that gives birth to the rest of the anamorphic timeline. The point of the film is not to tell a story of beginning, middle, and end, but rather show the end then slowly explain the who’s and why’s. This is a slow paced movie and it doesn’t pretend to be otherwise, but it’s done in a smart way to keep the audience intrigued while staying true to itself.
What makes this movie is the leading lady Caitlin Gerard who plays Lizzie. Her complex character was a role custom made for her. From fierce, shotgun shooting lady to a fragile, fearful pregnant woman, she plays the many facets of her character impeccably. With minimal dialogue, her character has a lot to say through body language and facial expressions, and Gerard owns every one them.
Originality is not the strongest trait, but there is still a lot to be appreciated. If you enjoy slow pace movies like The Witch and Bone Tomahawk, then you will find yourself enjoying this as well. This heavily story-driven film doesn’t spoon-feed or dumb down the story to satisfy the audience. There are a few question marks left at the end leaving some room for interpretation. The movie might seem like it’s moving at a snail pace, but the distorted timeline makes the viewing a pleasant one.
The Wind is hitting VOD and select theaters April 5th.
‘The Wind’ is a Minimalistic Story of Isolation and Haunting Terrors [Review]