Kelly Reichardt’s suspense thriller Night moves follows three passionate environmentalists whose home grown plot to blow up a controversial dam unravels into a journey of doubt, paranoia and unintended consequences.
Set against the ravishing, threatened natural beauty of Oregon, the film tracks step-by-relentless-step as quiet organic farmer Josh (Jesse Eisenberg, THE SOCIAL NETWORK), high society dropout Dena (Dakota Fanning, WAR OF THE WORLDS, the TWILIGHT saga) and adrenaline-driven ex-Marine Harmon (Peter Sarsgaard, BLUE JASMINE, “The Killing”) prepare, carry out and then experience the shocking fallout of what they hoped would be an attention-grabbing act of sabotage. Feeling they have been pushed to the limit by disregard for the local ecosystem, the trio is about to see their own personal limits tested.
As the tension mounts, the film touches on provocative moral questions about the underside of idealism and the modern collision of values and violence. But the story also veers increasingly inward, into the maelstrom of remorse, fear and panic that seeps through Josh, Dena and Hamon’s lives.
For Reichardt, who brings her distinctive voice to the thriller genre, the story is “not about politics but about people.” Josh, Dena and Harmon each have their reasons for blowing up the dam, but in the process, their political intentions turn hauntingly personal.
Certificate: 15 Drama | Thriller
Dir: Kelly Reichardt, Canada, 2013, 112 mins
Cast: Jesse Eisenberg, Dakota Fanning, Peter Sarsgaard