Well, this is a first.
I’d like to post a more honest review of The Revenant after reflecting on the film and looking at other reviews.
In my original review (which you can see here) I gave the film 9 out of 10 based on its technical excellence, strong performances and unique interpretation of an old story.
I still stand by everything I said about it technically. One thing I knew for certain when leaving the cinema was that The Revenant looked like no other Western or genre film to date.
What I wasn’t sure of however was the performances, characters and overall emotional hook.
I think Leonardo DiCaprio is a good actor, particularly in Inception. Do I think he’s great? Have I been blown away by any of his performances? In all honesty, not really.
Seeing him in Titanic, Django Unchained and The Revenant, even though his characters are very different, I never felt I was watching anyone else but Leonard DiCaprio.
Despite what he endured in The Revenant, I thought he was ok. His performance was convincing.
I still agree with everything I said about Tom Hardy’s performance. In fact, I thought he was better than Leo. He was unrecognizable.
As for what I said about the film’s unique presentation, it is unique visually but in terms of substance there didn’t seem to be anything above decent.
I didn’t know what to feel after seeing The Revenant. While the characters’ reactions were authentic, I struggled to empathize with them. I think this actually may be due to the film’s lack of originality.
For example, we don’t see much of Hugh Glass’s relationship with his wife and son other than some dreamy, sentimental flashbacks and the brief conversations he has with his son.
The Revenant didn’t present a clearer depiction of human relationships, just what we’ve seen in films before.
Like I said I didn’t know what to feel after seeing the film. I was confused. I wasn’t sure what I was going to write in this review. So I chickened and wrote what everyone else was saying.
After looking at some other reviews I discovered that other people had the same issues I had. I felt compelled to write this re-assessment as I thought it was wrong to blindly agree with the majority opinion out of fear.
So I did what I’ve just done, conveyed my actual opinion.
Overall The Revenant is a technical marvel but very shallow in character and story which makes it a mediocre but entertaining film.
The Revenant earns a legitimate 6 out of 10.