Review: Nomadland

When the company she works for goes under, Fern (Frances McDormand) packs up her van and lives life as a nomad in the Western U.S. She meets plenty of other nomads, trades and listens to their stories, all while we learn more about her.

I strangely kept thinking of Stories We Tell while watching this, even though they couldn't be more different. I didn't enjoy that documentary, but watching Nomadland made me think that I should revisit it eventually. Maybe it's because Nomadland feels like a documentary. Aside from McDormand and David Strathairn, all the other people in this movie are actual nomads going by their real names. Director ChloĆ© Zhao takes great care with telling their stories.

I have to say, Zhao's efforts in making this film is the high point for me. It's not the most engaging film out there, it's more of an experience and it's the way Zhao shoots everything that enhances said experience.

McDormand and Strathairn are both good. I like that this film didn't have a big dramatic climax, but instead took everything in stride. It's definitely worth it to watch for Zhao's work alone. 

Recommended: Yes

Grade: B

Memorable Quote: "Well, I think you're being a bitch." - Fern (Frances McDormand)


  1. I have this film and Zhao's first feature film in my hard drive as I hope to catch up on Zhao's work as the only film of hers I've seen so far is The Rider which I liked a lot.

    1. I meant to rent The Rider but never got around to it. I'll have to check it out.

  2. Glad more people are finally getting to see it. I really love it. McDormand never ceases to amaze me.

    1. I know, took them long enough to roll it out for us plebs lol. She's always good.

  3. I really want to see this film since I love this actress and I love David Strathairn.


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