An FBI agent teams with the town's veteran game tracker to investigate a murder that occurred on a Native American reservation.
This film is written and directed by Taylor Sheridan, who previously directed “Sicario”, and received an Oscar nomination for his screenplay of “Hell or High Water“. It is a murder mystery that makes striking use of its rugged, wintry Wyoming landscape. Wind River is the name of a Native American Indian reservation, where a girl’s body is found by professional tracker and hunter Cory (played by Jeremy Renner). The thinly manned local police force, run by sheriff Ben (Graham Greene), is bolstered by rookie FBI agent Jane Banner (Elizabeth Olsen). She wisely enlists the help of Cory, who clearly knows the area and its people.
This is no Hollywood crime thriller. Here the remote setting emphasises the difficult lives of the local Native Americans, but while the often-troubled locals are an important element to the story, the film avoids being a preachy left-wing piece on the plight of the people. It makes its political point but does not rub the audience’s nose in it. The plot has some genuinely unexpected turns and the acting is fine, but the star is really the mountain landscape, which is striking beautiful yet clearly dangerous. As the main character says: “Luck is for those in the city; here you either survive or surrender.”