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Wind River


Stars: Jeremy Renner, Elizabeth Olsen, Gil Birmingham, Graham Greene, Julia Jones, Martin Sensmeier, James Jordan, Jon Bernthal, Tantoo Cardinal, Kelsey Asbille, Teo Briones

Director: Taylor Sheridan

A snowbound midwest thriller vaguely along the lines of Fargo, from the director of Hell and High Water.

In an opening that you could call Midwinter Murders, a barefoot native American girl (Asbille) is found dead in the snow, having apparently run six miles from the scene of her attack and obvious rape. The body of a man, perhaps her boyfriend, is also discovered.

FBI agent Jane Banner (Olsen), more used to the casinos of Vegas than the wilds of Wyoming, is somehow dispatched to look into the deaths, with the assistance of tracker/hunter Cory Lambert (Renner) and the sparsely-manned local enforcement base.

Lambert, whose own daughter was found dead two years earlier under unexplained circumstances, proves the snowbike-riding guide she needs, the trail leading to an isolated encampment of oil drillers and their trailers.

A multi-gun shootout here provides some rather bizarre excitement before the case is closed.

The settings (actually shot in Utah) are the star in a serviceable thriller that threatens to make statements about the plight of the native Americans on the Wind River reservation, but never quite gets there. Brenner is fine as the memory-haunted guide - whose young son (Briones) disappears rather mysteriously half-way through the story - but Olsen lacks the steel you'd expect in a federal agent.

David Quinlan

USA 2016. UK Distributor: STX Entertainment. Colour by efilm.
108 minutes. Widescreen. UK certificate: 15.

Guidance ratings (out of 3): Sex/nudity 1, Violence/Horror 1, Drugs 0, Swearing 2.

Review date: 03 Sep 2017