Film Review: Impulsive, Curious Tale of Dystopia in ‘The Rover’

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Average: 4.3 (3 votes) Oscarman rating: 3.0/5.0
Rating: 3.0/5.0

CHICAGO –There is a profound interest in impulse within the work of Australian filmmaker David Michod, whose number of features finally reaches two with his anticipated followup to “Animal Kingdom,” “The Rover.” Even his co-writing work for Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s life-crasher movie “Hesher” is indicative of a storytelling force jazzed by that which is abrupt and unexplainable, and without worry of how polarizing these weirdo choices may be. With “Animal Kingdom” providing superb testament to his potential for straight dramatic tension through performance, Michod now meanders towards the more oblique territory of “Hesher” with “The Rover,” an impressionistic assembly of questions that reach their finite answers with impulsive expressions.

For his second film, director David Michod returns to the hot Australian landscape, but to a world more damaged than a crime family’s home. The title cards say “Ten years after the collapse,” and while the initial collapse is not shown, one can see its remnants in the quiet territory that makes for “The Rover’s” stage. Guy Pearce plays Eric, a stone-face loner in a now very hostile world who travels cautiously. When his car is stolen with some mystery item important still in it, he makes it his life priority to recover the truck. By chance, he meets up with a young man named Rey (Robert Pattinson), who was abandoned by his brother Henry (Scoot McNairy), the ruffian who also helped steal Eric’s mobile. As Eric and Rey make haste to catch up with Henry and his men, they encounter various depths of optimism and pessimism about mankind’s potential for existence, outside of a society of order.

“The Rover” opens in Chicago June 20th. Featuring Guy Pearce, Robert Pattinson, and Scott McNairy. Co-written and directed by David Michod. Rated “R”

StarContinue reading for Nick Allen’s full review of “The Rover”

The Rover
The Rover
Photo credit: A24 Films

StarContinue reading for Nick Allen’s full review of “The Rover”

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