Alejandro González Iñárritu is the nominal director of The Revenant, a historical drama set in the American wilderness of the early 19th century, but the movie doesn’t resemble any of his previous work. Prior to his Oscar-winning Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance), his films—Amores Perros (2000), 21 Grams (2003), Babel (2006), Biutiful (2010)—were unbearably dour and self-important, with gimmicky overlapping plots, filmmaking techniques cribbed from Steven Soderbergh, and a message that boiled down to “it’s a small world after all.” By contrast, the world portrayed in The Revenant is gigantic: vast landscapes, mile-high trees, and infinite horizons. But the auteur of that vision isn’t Iñárritu—it’s cinematographer Emmanuel Lubezki. Continue reading >>