Rae lives on a farm on the outskirts of a small town in the Ozark Mountains (a region that covers parts of Missouri, Arkansas, Oklahoma and Kansas) with her unresponsive mother and two young siblings. She is seventeen and taking care of a family that has no money and relies on the kindness of her neighbours and Rae’s know-how to survive. The sheriff arrives to inform Rae that her father put up the farm as bail bond and appears to have disappeared. If he does not turn up in court, their home will be forfeited. Rae goes on a mission to find her father and save the family.
This is a beautiful piece of cinema that is beautifully carried by Jennifer Lawrence who plays Rae. She is strong and prepared to do whatever she can for her family – regardless of what sacrifice it may mean for herself. The scenery is grim and cold, and reflects the hopelessness of Rae’s situation. The film is violent and gritty and awful, but moving and amazing.