This week, BUFS is pleased to present Into the Forest directed by Patricia Rozema. Starring Ellen Page, Evan Rachel Wood, Max Minghella.
Into the Forest is an apocalyptic drama based on the Jean Hegland novel of the same name. The film is set in British Columbia where a father Robert (Callum Keith Rennie) lives with his two daughters Eva (Evan Rachel Wood) and Nell (Ellen Page) in their modern home that is relatively secluded in the forest. Their contemporary life is starkly contrasted when it is interrupted by a power outage, which is set to last only a few days. Days quickly turn into weeks and weeks turn into months and the loss of electricity turns into a national crisis. After an accident that causes Robert to lose his life, sisters Eva and Nell are left in their secluded home to try and survive.
The film looks at the apocalyptic crisis that is happening from a micro-level never really showing the audience what is happening beyond the setting of the family’s remote cottage, although always alluding to the despair and doom occurring in the outside world. Instead, filmmaker Patricia Rozema, opts to remain focused on Nell and Eva’s relationship, looking at how it grows and changes as they are faced with challenges such as a limited tank of gas and sparse food supplies. Ellen Page plays a resourceful girl trying to make the best out of a bad situation, while Evan Rachel Wood gives the film a strong emotional center turning to her love for dance as a coping mechanism for the way her life is changing around her. The audience follows their relationship as they bond over their feelings of loneliness, strength and adversity.
Filmmaker Patricia Rozema does an excellent job at exposing the human condition in this intimate drama. Ellen Page and Evan Rachel wood both deliver performances of a lifetime. It is through their authenticity that a story of bonding and survival is told, as two women who are continuously tested are able to find themselves and rediscover life as they know it.
Into the Forest screens Wednesday at 7:00 p.m. at the Landmark Theaters, Pen Centre. Visit brocku.ca/bufs for details.