“Wind River” (out now on Blu-ray, DVD and Digital HD) is excellent, but it’s also a straight-ahead crime noir with a plot that could be adapted into an episode of any random CBS law enforcement drama. What makes it interesting and special is the setting: a young Native American woman has been murdered on Wyoming’s Wind River Reservation and an FBI agent (Elizabeth Olsen) enlists a well-connected local U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service tracker (Jeremy Renner) to help investigate the case.
Writer Taylor Sheridan (Oscar-nominated for “Hell or High Water”) makes his debut as a director and he’s using his uncomplicated plot to make a movie about Native American culture and show off some incredible Wyoming and Utah locations. There’s a message about the exploitation of Native American women, a message that matters so much Sheridan that he demanded (and got) Harvey Weinstein’s name removed as a producer after the studio mogul’s sexual assault scandal broke.
“Hell or High Water” (directed by David Mackenzie) was one of 2016’s very best films. “Wind River” may be just a notch below, but it’s a movie still one of this decade’s best movies aimed at an adult audience.
The home video release includes deleted scenes and a behind-the-scenes video gallery.