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ReelTalk Movie Reviews
A Whimper -- Not a Bang
by Betty Jo Tucker

Power outage! What can we do?

That’s the question for sisters two.

No lights, TV or internet.

And things get scarier, you bet.


Into the Forest tells a tale

of survival when all things fail

except the siblings’ love and grit.

Their spirits tested quite a bit.


This drama works almost throughout,

but toward the end, it fizzles out.

Still, kudos to cast members all.

Playing their roles, they do not fall.


The background music sounds just right.

Some camera shots are quite a sight! 

Director uses tension well.

Will our world end just like this Hell?

Nell and her older sister live with their father in a lovely house located in the woods of British Colombia. Although not without faults, the siblings seem to care about each other and their doting dad. Then one day, a major power outage disrupts their daily lives. Nell (Ellen Page) needs the internet to study for her SAT exam, and Eva (Evan Rachel Wood) must have music to practice her dance moves for an important audition. Luckily, they do have a car to take them into town for supplies. When they arrive, the town looks deserted, so they begin to realize something is terribly wrong -- and not just in their area.

Into the Forest focuses on how Nell and Eva react to this terrifying crisis. They have led fairly protected lives, so much of the success of this film comes from the way Page and Wood, two very talented actresses, show the growth and resourcefulness of their characters, especially (SPOILER ALERT) after their father (Callum Rennie) suffers a horrible accident.

Days, weeks and months go by without power. Nell falls in love with a young lad (Max Minghella) and considers running off with him. Eva becomes the victim of a brutal attack. The sisters argue over things like gas for the generator, a piece of candy, and having a baby. Sometimes the tension between them seems almost too much for each to bear. But their sisterly love keeps them going.  

Most end-of-the-world type movies emphasize explosions, earthquakes, floods or other disasters. Into the Forest shows a less spectacular -- but even more terrifying -- scenario. Are you brave enough to see this one played out on screen?         

This is how the world ends. Not with a bang but a whimper. – T.S. Elliot

(Directed by Patricia Rozema from co-writer Jean Heglund’s novel. Released by A24 and rated “R” for a scene of violence involving rape, language and some sexuality/nudity.)

For more information about Into the Forest, go to the IMDb or Rotten Tomatoes website.

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