Three radical environmentalists decided to carry out the protest of their lives – to blow up a hydroelectric dam in Oregon. That’s the briefest description of the thriller-drama that the distinguished American indie filmmaker Kelly Reichardt presented in the main program of the festival in Venice. By then, Reichardt had already confirmed herself as one of the leading names on the American independent film scene, and with “Night Moves” she also changed her previous minimalist style for which she was known until then. “Night Movements” is perhaps her most mainstream film, and it is actually a completely thought-out, smart and well-rounded film that deals with a rather controversial topic in a delicate way.
Josh (Jesse Eisenberg) and Dena (Dakota Fanning) are two young radical environmental metallers. One of those who are convinced that something must be done urgently because nature is about to be destroyed, the climate is changing irreversibly, the world is getting polluted, and they cannot just sit idly by and watch everything go down. So they will find ex-marine Harmon (Peter Sarsgard) and the three of them will embark on the realization of the plan they have been dreaming about for a long time. Blowing up one of the dams at the nearby hydroelectric power plant will be their sign of protest, but it is clear that little will go the way they envisioned.
We follow their implementation of the plan from the very beginning and the purchase of the boat they intend to use to take them to the dam and up to what will happen to their lives after they realize their plan. Reichardt takes a completely neutral position here and almost in an observational way brings the story of three completely different people connected by the same completely radical and insane plan. Although both Josh and Dena hoped that their action would have some effect and effect in the fight for nature itself, it will turn out that this event will have an effect on themselves. It was particularly interesting in the second half of the film to follow how that event affected their lives, so “Night Moves” is also a solid character study.