Thursday, February 05, 2009

Wendy and Lucy

Tonight I saw Wendy and Lucy, starring Michelle Williams and Lucy.

Have you ever been in a situation where one bad thing happened and then another followed, and another, until you felt as if the whole universe was against you?

This is how you'll feel watching events unfold in the life of Wendy (Williams), a young girl from Indiana who is headed to Alaska to work in a Ketchikan cannery.

We first see her playing with her dog Lucy (Lucy) in the woods and learn she is in Oregon. After she wakes up to a security guard telling her she's not allowed to sleep on Walgreen's property, she realizes her car won't start. And thus begins her own personal spiral to hell.

With one bad choice, her world soon spins out of control and we're held emotionally hostage wanting so badly for it to all turn out okay for her. Why do we care? This is what makes the movie good: we have very few clues as to what put Wendy in this situation, yet her almost numb responses to each event make us unimaginably sympathetic. She seems like a decent person who is just down on her luck—and haven't we all been down on our luck at one point in our lives or another?

The film moves at a slow, quiet pace, but is never boring. The few supporting characters that emerge (the security guard, the mechanic, etc.) feel as though they're real people who we may actually encounter when we have car trouble ourselves; the dog is undeniably sweet.

And Michelle Williams amazing performance makes this very human story work.

See this movie—you'll painfully cringe at her misfortune while joyfully tearing up at the sight of the kindness she experiences.

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