Wendy and Lucy (2008)

  • Drama, Female Experience
  • 1h 20m
  • USA

This landmark 2008 collaboration between acclaimed director Kelly Reichardt and actor Michelle Williams follows an itinerant young woman and her dog as she searches for employment in the American Northwest.

“A touchstone of the new realism in American cinema” (The New York Times), Wendy and Lucy is a profound questioning of the American dream and who has the right to it. Wendy Carroll (Williams, in a beautifully understated performance) is driving to Alaska in search of lucrative summer work at a fish cannery and the start of a new life with her beloved dog, Lucy. When her car breaks down in small-town Oregon, Wendy becomes hard-pressed for cash and food, and falls into a series of misadventures that call into question society’s responsibility toward its own citizens. Based on Jon Raymond’s story “Train Choir” and adapted by Raymond and Reichardt, Wendy and Lucy raises pressing questions of how far sympathy, generosity, and basic human duty (and dignity) go during tough economic times. Inspired equally by the British kitchen-sink dramas of the ’60s and the New German Cinema, Reichardt’s film is “a masterpiece of quiet desperation — and small acts of civility” (Rick Groen, The Globe and Mail).

Official Selection, 2008 Toronto International Film Festival

Winner, 2008 Toronto Film Critics Association Awards for Best Film and Best Actress (Williams)

Closed-captioning available.


Kelly Reichardt

Canadian Distributor

Mongrel Media