Back in 2018, director Chloe Zhao was quite rightfully acclaimed for her quietly beautiful film, The Rider.
Full of haunting images of the western landscape, The Rider was a character study of a rodeo rider struggling to recover after a serious accident. It was a poignant and affecting film, one that made you cry while steering clear of all of the usual cliches. Though the film was ignored at the Oscars, it still picked up several awards from the critics groups.
When 2020 began, Chloe Zhao had two movie scheduled to be released. One was Marvel’s Eternals, a big-budget MCU film that sounds like it’s basically the antithesis of The Rider. The other is Nomadland, which stars Frances McDormand as a woman who, having lost her job and her home, travels the country in search of employment. Based on a nonfiction book, Nomadland sounds like it will continue to explore the themes that Zhao first examined in The Rider.
As a result of COVID-19, both films were briefly in limbo. Eternals was eventually rescheduled for February of next year. Nomadland is set to premiere at both the Venice and Toronto Film Festivals this Friday. It’s scheduled to get a theatrical release on December 4th and Searchlight Film is expected to push the film for Oscar consideration.
Here’s the teaser, which features Frances McDormand doing a lot of walking: