Review: Alejandro González Iñárritu’s The Revenant

sen city

Blood stands for beauty in The Revenant.

Alejandro González Iñárritu’s brave — and bravura — new film is a frostbitten epic. It is a film that mesmerises with its brutality and its breadth, its ragged relentlessness and its barely masked masochism, and, perhaps above all, a film that must be experienced in a theatre — ideally with a sweater at hand.

So brilliantly do Iñárritu and his master cinematographer Emmanuel Lubezki evoke the sense of freezing cold that it’s hard not to shiver, and the colour white, in all its pristine glory, emerges the most forbidding, most biting of the lot: the picture-perfect frames are composed around temperature rather than merely colour, with the white of the snow and the white of rapids more frightening and endless than any angry animal. Icicles crust around big beards making whiskers look like they could be snapped off like twigs, steam from…

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