• Strictly Films

Montana Story; Grade: B


Montana Story centers around a son named Cal (Owen Teague) whom has come down to his old house in Montana, where his father is in a coma breathing on a tube as the end can be near for him. Cal is situating finances including the family vehicle or selling the house as well, while also trying to get a vet to take care of a twenty five year old horse and put him down. Unexpectedly: Cal’s sister Erin (Haley Lu Richardson) shows up out of nowhere for a visit, as Cal hasn’t seen nor heard from her in seven years. Witness a tale of an unexpected reunion between siblings, as we go forward to why exactly did Erin left without notice in the first place.


For some odd reason the film schedule for my local theater wouldn’t show this upcoming weeks schedule till the very last minute on Thursday… Which is why I had to go out of my way and see this film till it officially left theaters.


Montana Story is a fairly written tale, in which some audience whom have had family issues can even relate to. When it comes to the whole distraught dynamic of the family matter, not too long ago I’ve experience a similar scenario with a family, as I felt the way this film orchestrated was honest and accurate to what goes on in real life. You can see both siblings Cal and Erin are both pretty drained emotionally, as it feels like a past burden that really made what was once a beloved siblingship, to now emotionally unstable as the relationship fell completely apart.


As you uncover the root of the problem as to why Erin hasn’t contacted Cal or why Cal feels very unsettled and very upset… You start to see it was a very upsetting moment in their lives, where it felt in some way betrayal as that is why Erin just took off without ever speaking to Cal for years. Though I felt it was unfair by Erin to just leave her brother without notice, I do however understand why she did what she had to do, especially in their living circumstance when they used to live with each other as teenagers.


Sure this film doesn’t excel in terms of providing wowing entertainment value, it’s slow paced as it’s mostly characters just catching up with themselves and unraveling what is inside their minds out in a Mountain View. However: I couldn’t help but to throughly appreciate what I was watching just because how raw, realistic, and accurate this tale was. Which is why in the third act especially: The film delivers a striking emotional sequence between Cal and Erin, elevated by great display of acting from Owen Teague and Haley Lu Richardson.


The Cinematography t’was solid, there is some really good nature shots highlighting the landscape of this one mountain rocky like scenery, followed by some lovely shots of the snowy mountain, and who can forget about the ranch. Cast all in all was solid as a whole, Haley Lu Richardson delivered a pretty good performance as well as Owen Teague, as they both had solid chemistry with each other, making it a believable siblingship. I also enjoyed Ace played by Gilbert Owuor, thought the character and performance was throughly enjoyable and sweet even. The film also has a couple quality comedic moments as well, despite it being a very slow saddening drama it does have a couple nice moments of laughter here and there.


Overall, Montana Story was a solid film. I recommend checking this one out, if you like fairly written dramas that are accurate to real life family situations… You might like this. -Mitch Smietana


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