Lost River

2014

Drama / Fantasy / Mystery / Thriller

56
Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Spilled 41%
IMDb Rating 5.8 10 0 11076

Synopsis


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Movie Reviews

Reviewed by filmdwerper 9 / 10

An Amazing Ride!

I saw this movie at the screening in Cannes. What a stunning directorial debut by Ryan Gosling. He has learned a lot from Wing Refn. The movie grasps you from the start, and doesn't let go until the very end.

The scenes were utterly visual, complex with a vivacious nature and astonishing narrative character and composition. Mr Gosling shows his true creative colors as he blend scene into scene with paramount thoroughness. My projection is that this movie will get an Oscar nod at least. In my humble opinion, Ryan Gosling is a profound filmmaker, with a beautiful future to come.

The actors are well cast. The chemistry between the two main protagonists is unique and brutal. Christina Hendrix once again shows us what she can do with her youthful enthusiasm. Without giving away any spoilers, I will predict she will make you cry.

Lost River is a masterpiece.

Reviewed by Antoni Tolwinski 9 / 10

Impressive Directorial Debut

Straight off the bat, I am somewhat surprised about the overwhelmingly bad ratings this film received, and no, I won't go down the route of claiming that people "don't understand art". The more I explore art house, the more I realise it is all about preference - not everyone likes reading into films too much, and a particular style may not be appealing to everyone. In 'Lost River', Gosling clearly combines different styles of directors he worked with recently - I definitely recognised influences from Derek Cianfrance and Nicolas Winding Refn in terms of character interaction, cinematography and of course the gorgeously atmospheric soundtrack. Apart from being a learning curve for Ryan Gosling, 'Lost River' is an impressive directorial debut in a lot of aspects.

One of the successful aspects is the overall plot surrounding these strangely intriguing characters, including a family with somewhat typical problems and a protagonist teenager son, along with a love interest played by Saoirse Ronan (who also played the cute Agatha in 'The Grand Budapest Hotel') as well as the haunting presence of a "bully" portrayed disturbingly well by Matt Smith. There's also a side plot involving the troubled mother struggling to maintain her house and family through a dodgy job and a delusional boss. To put it straight, there is a lot happening in this film, yet, it doesn't feel at all overwhelming. It was obvious that Gosling went into this project with a lot of things he wanted to explore, however on the larger thematic scale it seems subtle, at times focusing on style over content with its beautifully composed shots accompanied by an enchanting score reminiscent of Winding Refn.

On the negative side of things, the character interaction feels slightly unrealistic at some points, and overall originality is barely visible. However, "originality" isn't entirely necessary to create an unsettling art house flick - Gosling succeeds in this and definitely deserves praise, especially being his writing and directorial debut. To conclude, 'Lost River' is a disturbingly enchanting addition to the expanding genre of art house - undeniably deserving its spot not only as an adapted experiment paying homage to great directors, but also as a successful collaboration of under-appreciated talents.

Reviewed by Louis Gur 8 / 10

Amazing directorial debut from Ryan Gosling, but not for everyone.

Most famous actors rely heavily on the production team during their directorial debuts and aren't very involved in the directing process. Last year, Angelina Jolie truly proved this with her movie Unbroken (actually her second film as a director though). A high budget WW2 film that Jolie clearly didn't put much effort into. It feels like the whole idea was just given to her when she called her agent and stated that she would like to direct a new movie. It is also not uncommon to see actors casting themselves in their directorial debuts, such as Zach Braff in Garden State. Lost River, is the weirdest directorial debut you'll ever see from an actor.

I've always liked Ryan Gosling. He picks his movies carefully and works great with "different" directors like Nicolas Winding Refn and Derek Cianfrance. Lost River is probably the strangest film in recent years. It is hard to explain what it is about so I'm not going to talk about that in this review.

The movie is very similar to most David Lynch films, especially Mulholland Drive. Therefore, one of the best things about Lost River is actually the cinematography, it helps to create the mysterious experience. I'm a very big fan of thrillers which don't explain everything to the viewer, but I know most people aren't. And that's why many will dislike this movie for what it is. With that being said, if you hate to re-watch films and want simple story lines, Lost River is not what you should be watching.

I really appreciate all the effort Ryan Gosling has put into this movie. It is risky to make a film like Lost River these days, and I'm glad Gosling was willing to take that risk to show his trademark. It is notable that he actually made the movie himself and didn't rely on the producers. Fans of David Lynch, Nicolas Winding Refn and David Cronenberg will surely have a good time with Lost River. I'm looking forward to Gosling's next feature, and can't wait to re-watch this film.

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