'The Revenant': The newest 'true story' film to impress Oscar voters?

'Revenant,' which stars Leonardo DiCaprio, is one of the movies this year to have been based on a true story, a genre that's become an awards season staple.

Courtesy Twentieth Century Fox/AP
'The Revenant' stars Leonardo DiCaprio.

“Based on a true story” films are always a part of the awards season.

The movies add an intriguing aura to Oscar hopefuls and when an actor or actress is portraying a real person, especially a figure known to contemporary audiences, that may impress Academy voters.

This year is no different in that some of the possible Oscars contenders took their inspiration from real life, but it’s a very different collection of movies that fall under this heading.

“Spotlight,” which was released this past November, centers on Boston Globe journalists who did Pulitzer Prize-winning work in reporting on the Catholic Church sex abuse scandal. “Bridge of Spies,” which came out this past October, tells the story of a lawyer who becomes embroiled in a prisoner exchange with the Soviet Union.

And joining the list of top contenders that were inspired by real events is “The Revenant.” 

The movie is directed by last year’s winner of the Best Director Oscar, Alejandro González Iñárritu, The film for which Iñárritu won the prize, “Birdman,” took Best Picture. In addition, “Revenant” stars frequent Oscar nominee Leonardo DiCaprio. (The actor has been nominated four times for his acting but has not yet won.)

“Revenant” tells the story of Hugh Glass (DiCaprio), who is abandoned by his comrades in the western part of America after being attacked by a bear. He must attempt to make his way to safety and decides to take revenge on those who wronged him.

The newsroom setting of “Spotlight” and courtroom scenes of “Bridge” are a long way from the setting of “Revenant,” which found cast and crew filming in Canada in freezing weather.

But while some changes were most likely made to the story, “Revenant” will be another end-of-the-year film that informs audiences about a story they may not know. 

“Revenant” came out in limited release on Dec. 25 and will enter wide release on Jan. 8.

You've read  of  free articles. Subscribe to continue.

Dear Reader,

About a year ago, I happened upon this statement about the Monitor in the Harvard Business Review – under the charming heading of “do things that don’t interest you”:

“Many things that end up” being meaningful, writes social scientist Joseph Grenny, “have come from conference workshops, articles, or online videos that began as a chore and ended with an insight. My work in Kenya, for example, was heavily influenced by a Christian Science Monitor article I had forced myself to read 10 years earlier. Sometimes, we call things ‘boring’ simply because they lie outside the box we are currently in.”

If you were to come up with a punchline to a joke about the Monitor, that would probably be it. We’re seen as being global, fair, insightful, and perhaps a bit too earnest. We’re the bran muffin of journalism.

But you know what? We change lives. And I’m going to argue that we change lives precisely because we force open that too-small box that most human beings think they live in.

The Monitor is a peculiar little publication that’s hard for the world to figure out. We’re run by a church, but we’re not only for church members and we’re not about converting people. We’re known as being fair even as the world becomes as polarized as at any time since the newspaper’s founding in 1908.

We have a mission beyond circulation, we want to bridge divides. We’re about kicking down the door of thought everywhere and saying, “You are bigger and more capable than you realize. And we can prove it.”

If you’re looking for bran muffin journalism, you can subscribe to the Monitor for $15. You’ll get the Monitor Weekly magazine, the Monitor Daily email, and unlimited access to CSMonitor.com.

QR Code to 'The Revenant': The newest 'true story' film to impress Oscar voters?
Read this article in
https://www.csmonitor.com/The-Culture/Culture-Cafe/2015/1230/The-Revenant-The-newest-true-story-film-to-impress-Oscar-voters
QR Code to Subscription page
Start your subscription today
https://www.csmonitor.com/subscribe