It is rare to find a Hollywood film with mature stars that is worthy of their participation and has a decent story to tell. let him go is based on a novel by Larry Watson, which was interpreted here by the author and director Thomas Bezucha (who convinced me with his feature film from 2005) The family stone). Conveniently settled in a Gary Cooper alcove, Costner plays an ex-sheriff and rancher who accompanies his wife Diane Lane on a journey that leads to sadness and sacrifice far beyond her expectations.
Lane, who is always good, has never been better. Her character is well drawn, with shades and colors that the actress can rarely play. She appears to be a straight shooter, but holds a lot of emotions in reserve so she doesn’t burst open and drown her in grief. But she is a woman of quiet determination who does what she must to protect her daughter-in-law, and especially her little grandson, who was taken away under cover of darkness. He is now in the hands of an abusive father and his strange, volatile family.
We gradually encounter this elusive, Gothic clan as the film transforms into melodrama. Bezucha masterfully guides us through all of this, effectively building tension in several key scenes, and taking his time before offering us (and his characters) a release. Jeffrey Donovan and the incomparable Lesley Manville have outstanding supporting roles and make the most of them.
But it’s the relationship between the stars that anchors this film; They are a perfect match. Costner projects calm strength and Lane has a showcase scene in a calm moment before the drama accelerates. This is as good as I’ve seen it last year. It takes place in a restaurant where she lets go of her guard and leaves herself vulnerable to the one man she knows she can trust.
Appeared in theaters in November during the pandemic, let him go I’ve never had the opportunity to find the audience that deserves it. Now that it is available on streaming platforms, I feel compelled to spread the word.