Directed by John Curran
Starring Mia Wasikowska and Adam Driver
In UK Cinemas April 25th, 2014

by Joanna Orland

Based on author Robyn Davidson’s memoir of the same name, Tracks follows Robyn (Wasikowska) as she travels across Australian deserts from Alice Springs to the Indian Ocean with noone other than her dog and four camels in tow.  Photographer Rick Smolan (Driver) helps Robyn fund this adventure by getting her to enter into a deal with National Geographic for them to do a story about her journey.  Smolan features throughout the film at various points throughout her journey to photograph her.

The substance of this film is in Mia Wasikowska’s performance.  She is mesmerizing and fully immerses the audience in her portrayal of Davidson, aka the “Camel Lady”.  From learning to train camels, to her struggles in the desert, the audience is with her 100%.  Adam Driver as Smolan is the perfect casting choice.  He doesn’t even need to do anything for the audience to be on his side – they love him.  Every time he appears on screen, the audience roars with laughter.  He has this same effect in the Coen Brothers’ film Inside Llewyn Davis in which he has a small, but memorable role.  He is comic relief, but also a fine dramatic actor who knows how to balance the comedy within the realm of drama.

Tracks is not just a story about a woman’s journey across the desert, it is about a woman doing things on her own terms.  A character piece with a vast and expansive landscape at the helm.

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