Since her comeback with Old Joy I have like each of Kelly Reichardt’s films less than the last one. This one is the closest to leave me indifferent. I did think it was interesting though that while all of the films seem to have a political aspect to them, the earlier ones expressed that more outside of the plot, while here it was central to the plot, but seemed less political thematically. In fact I would call it muddled, part character piece on the modern day lefties, part paranoia thriller, part psychodrama on eisenberg’s character. not of it really added up though and things like the supposed sexual tension just seemed distracting.
I still love this movie, but it isn’t as immediate of an experience for me as it used to be.
The first two times I saw it in the theater (I’ve somehow seen it 4 times in that setting) were stronger experiences because of who I was with. The first time was a male friend and the second a female friend and both relationships were strained at the time for different reasons, but basically I felt like I had fucked things up beyond repair. The longing and awkwardness of the men in the film was a perfect reflection of how I was feeling and somehow watching it with those people felt cathartic, as if the film was able to acknowledge to each of us what we were unable.
Watching it will always be tied to those two people for me, but luckily I suppose, those feelings have been muted with age and resolution.