Winter's Bone Reviews
Lawrence is the movie's blooming discovery, a mesmerizing actor with a gaze that's the opposite of actress-coy and a voice modulated in the low, almost monotone cadences of local ways.
Every so often a film gets under our skin with its haunting authenticity, reinforcing our faith in the wonderfully transporting power of cinematic storytelling. Winter's Bone is unquestionably that film.
Following its brave heroine (an outstanding Jennifer Lawrence) as she seeks to uncover the truth behind her father's disappearance, the film employs the structure of a whodunit to take a tough, unflinching look at an impoverished Ozarks community.
The main reason for Winter's Bone to exist is that it delivers a little voyeuristic thrill -- a bit of poverty porno -- for the critics who awarded it their highest honors at this year's Sundance Film Festival.
The dialogue is so sparse and the plot is so lean in Winter's Bone, it requires acting of exemplary strength, and the movie delivers in spades, chiefly in the performances by Lawrence and Hawkes.