Love Song Review: Meager Western Romance Saved by Dickie’s Performance

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In a Love Song, a letter unites two people who have not seen each other for decades. Over time, it’s easy to forget the shape of a person — how he looks, how he moves, how he pronounces a name. But, as if from a past life, sometimes they fit back into the picture and, maybe, can even replace something that has been missing for a long time. “Love Song” directed by Max Walker-Silverman is a quiet but exciting story about reunions, love and time, which is set against the backdrop of the American West. What the film lacks in its meager script is more than compensated for by the two actors who spend most of their screen time together.

“Love Song” is based on the leading performances of Dale Dickey as Faye and Wes Studi as Leto. The couple should meet in the shadow of the Colorado Mountains. Faye, who had known Leto for decades and hadn’t seen him for as long, had been widowed for seven years. When Leto finally arrives at his camp, it begins a kind of exploration as the two get reacquainted with each other and perhaps even realize that Faye asking Leto out on a date many years ago in elementary school foreshadowed their feelings for each other years later. .

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Faye’s daily routine, parked at Campsite 7, is shown at the beginning of the film. Every morning she makes coffee on the stove and cooks crayfish that she fished out of the lake in front of her trailer. She waits for something to come in the mail and joins the couple at dinner, telling them that it’s been years (“decades enough to stand on your feet”) since she saw Leto. This helps well to create anticipation for the upcoming arrival of Leto. Like Faye, the audience wants him to get to Campsite 7. She is clearly excited, and Dickie inspires Faye with a kind of childish surprise, as if her expectation of this man, whom she knew in her youth, allowed him to surface. During one fake, Faye gets up when a car approaches, sips coffee to get rid of the taste of crayfish from her mouth, tucking her hair behind her ears. It’s not Lito yet, and she’s back to her routine, ignoring the mountains on the horizon in favor of something less tangible.

The naturalism of “Love Story” and its magnificent setting will immediately remind you of the critically acclaimed film “Land of Nomads” by Chloe Zhao, even if it does not correspond to the lofty ideas of this film. Nevertheless, the American West and the myths associated with it are a worthy backdrop for a story as extensive as the story of Faye and Leto. The decades that have passed since the couple saw each other linger on what is happening, like mountains inhabiting the background. Time only makes their reunion ache with more urgency, as if the next day might bring another decade during which they might not see each other again.

While the script may be sparse, Dickie is charming and brilliant in her role as Faye, which allows the veteran actor, who is best known for his small roles in a wide variety of films, from Breaking Bad to Winter’s Bone and Iron Man 3, to truly shine as a reserved frontier. woman. Dickie couldn’t have had a better screen partner in the Studio. The couple’s meeting, which takes place over the course of one day, is beautifully depicted as they play a game to get to know each other again after so many years. Unfortunately, the “Love Song” does not allow this day to linger too long. Maybe that makes sense, but it still feels like the movie is a little short when it comes to its central relationship. Regardless of what “Love Song” lacks in performance, it is more than compensated by a stellar performance and beautifully staged scenes.

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