1983

Hidden Flick: Land

Crossing back into time, one feels an almost drifting sense of purpose; fleeting, at best, but often wandering outwards, amidst some other surreal force; constantly, persistently pulling and pushing one onto a destiny which is always in reach, but seems so far away.


The human pursuit for land and resources has reached an almost epic battle point, prefacing some sort of almighty negative spin which has neither a mysterious conclusion, nor seems inevitable. Let’s face it, in a conflict of species versus planet, well…species would lose, wouldn’t it? Is the earth a species? Are we? Or, are we some sort of hodge podge, some mixture of the tease, some amalgamation, a wolfman’s brother, forged by the mind, the third eye of some unseen extraterrestrial force? Is this land we inhabit real?

In Carroll Ballard’s modest 1983 masterpiece, Never Cry Wolf, one feels an almost intangible pull towards the truth on a journey of modern man versus ancient beast. Scripted by Curtis Hanson, Sam Hamm, Richard Kletter and Ralph Furmaniak, and based upon the autobiography by conservationist Farley Mowat, the power of the film rests in the formidable work of actor Charles Martin Smith. Smith has the unlucky task of making his performance blend with the natural skills of his non-human thespians, the wolves, caribou and critters, effortlessly telling their parallel tale along with the straight narrative. Smith also redefines what it feels like to be a stranger in a strange land. His epiphany, through his acting—spoken word, quiet gesture and dawning wisdom—of what humans have become, is sobering to the core in this edition of Hidden Flick. READ ON for more on this week’s Hidden Flick…

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