Movie Review: Causeway (2022)

Premiered at Toronto International Film Festival, Streams and plays in limited theatres November 4 on Apple TV+.

Jennifer Lawrence and Brian Tyree Henry are the marvelous acting partners you didn’t know you needed headlining Lila Neugebauer’s debut film, the psychological drama Causeway (B). Lawrence is raw, effective and enchanting as a wounded veteran who reluctantly returns to her hometown of New Orleans where she befriends a similarly broken mechanic played with compelling and sometimes comic, nervy charm by Henry. As the soldier rehabilitates from her trauma and learns to feel again, her new bond of friendship helps reshape her worldview. Like other character study duets – Once and Leaving Las Vegas come to mind – there’s poignancy in the quiet observational moments and superb connection between actors giving their all to lived-in performances. The director creates renewal below sea level in her frequent water allusions, and viewers will feel like they are swimming in talent. The narrative could have used a bit more momentum at times, but fans of intimate stories and indelible characters will find this one quite rewarding.

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