Based on the Larry Watson novel of the same name, LET HIM GO was one of my favourite films of 2020 and was lucky to see theatrically. This throwback to family dramas with western motifs feels rare in this day and age of franchise superhero movies and is ultimately refreshing throughout to see an adult-oriented story like this on the big screen once again.
Kevin Costner and Diane Lane are both outstanding as a long-married couple as we first meet them on their Montana ranch. Costner’s George is a former sheriff who is quiet and restrained while Lane’s Margaret character speaks her mind openly. As the story begins, their son James dies in a horse riding accident and his widow Lorna (Kayli Carter) remarries a few years later. James and Lorna also had a son, Jimmy, who goes into this newer family. It’s quickly found out that Kayla’s new husband is not only abusive to Lorna but also has a violent family background, and both George and Margaret want little Jimmy to be freed from the family, or for Lorna to come with them, so they can raise Jimmy themselves.
This is a complicated family issue, made even more stressful due to the very over-protective family which turns to sudden violence. The horrors in the second half were even a little too much for me to bear at times, but it was also that I cared so much about these two fascinating leads and their plight to get their grandson into safe hands. Directed very well by Thomas Bezucha (known for much different pictures like THE FAMILY STONE and THE BIG EDEN) LET HIM GO is tough, powerful filmmaking and is not to be missed.
About The Blu Ray:
Like with the recent review of COME PLAY, I was really wishing Universal would push for a 4k HDR disc release of LET HIM GO to fully showcase the gorgeous cinematography by Canadian DOP Guy Godfree. Even so, this is a terrific Blu Ray presentation of the movie in its stunning, VERY wide 2.39 aspect ratio from digital photography. Shot mostly on the border of Alberta which features a mix of the Rocky mountains. Even the darkly lit scenes in the Weeboy house have stunning colors and vibrancy. The DTS Master Audio track is subtle at times but its intense sound effects really fill the room and have great dramatic impact where it’s needed.
The only features on the disc are short but very enjoyable featurette docs on the making of LET HIM GO, featuring several interviews from key cast and crew on adapting the book to the screen. What was the biggest surprise to learn here is that the Weeboy house was entirely a set, which completely convinced me was a real house in the middle of the country. I wish there was a filmmaker commentary track on here which could even give us some more reflection on making this movie, which everyone involved seemed to have loved making. A standard DVD is also included in the package, and there is also a digital copy included which can be added to Movies Anywhere in the United States, and Google Play in Canada.
LET HIM GO is now available on Blu Ray from Universal Pictures. As always, our thanks to ThinkJam PR for sending along a copy for review.