Imagine a collaboration between John Ford and Wallace Stevens and you might get a sense of what Kelly Reichardt pulls off here: a sincere re-creation of the pioneer experience, brought to life through careful, often unexpected detail.
Ben Sachs, Chicago Reader, 2011-05-27
Greatly enhanced by the performances of Michelle Williams and Bruce Greenwood, director Kelly Reichardt's film quietly becomes engrossing - it almost sneaks up on you.
Bill Goodykoontz, Arizona Republic, 2011-05-26
There are stretches that are, frankly, boring. But the vivid details and intimacy you develop with these travelers sticks with you, leaving you in awe of the insane feats people had to accomplish in order for us to enjoy the world we know today.
Rene Rodriguez, Miami Herald, 2011-05-25
A mesmerizing cinematic journey that is often as arduous and spare as the lives of its hard-bitten protagonists.
Ann Hornaday, Washington Post, 2011-05-20
A film ponderously slow in pace yet kinetically charged with insight; starkly realistic yet allegorical too; psychologically astute yet politically resonant.
Rick Groen, Globe and Mail, 2011-05-13
Those with the courage to explore uncharted territory will be rewarded with a rough gem of a movie.
Joe Williams, St. Louis Post-Dispatch, 2011-05-13
"Meek's Cutoff" is more an experience than a story.
Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times, 2011-05-12
If you allow its windswept silences to work on you, "Meek's Cutoff" gathers its own snakelike sense of momentum...
Michael Phillips, Chicago Tribune, 2011-05-12
It's the anti-western western, a story stripped of Zane Gray romance, sagebrush and mythic heroes.
Linda Barnard, Toronto Star, 2011-05-12
Vast and mysterious, the American West of Kelly Reichardt and Jonathan Raymond's "Meek's Cutoff" is not quite like any other landscape.
John Hartl, Seattle Times, 2011-05-05
The cinematography, by Chris Blauvelt, captures the rugged landscapes and rainless skies with a homespun elegance.
Steven Rea, Philadelphia Inquirer, 2011-05-05
Told largely in long shot, it's a painfully, beautifully slow film, which is understandable given the time, place, and situation.
Ty Burr, Boston Globe, 2011-05-05
Reichardt serves the broccoli of historical pedantry, deliberately withholding the delicious cheese sauce of entertainment.
Colin Covert, Minneapolis Star Tribune, 2011-05-05
Williams also starred in Reichardt's last, and best, film, Wendy and Lucy, and she clearly has a special affinity for the director, for whom she shows off her subtlest shades.
Peter Rainer, Christian Science Monitor, 2011-04-23
Amounts to a master class in the power of observation.
Joe Morgenstern, Wall Street Journal, 2011-04-22
Reichardt has stripped "Meek's" down to bare essentials and careful emotions. The cast captures that quality beautifully - like the water that is running out, everything is conserved.
Betsy Sharkey, Los Angeles Times, 2011-04-21
Reichardt trusts her audience, encourages her viewers to feel comfortable in the stillness and the quiet, and to draw their own conclusions from an ending that's as profound as it is enigmatic.
Christy Lemire, Associated Press, 2011-04-20
Under Oregon skies, there's political subtext for the taking in this terrific, unsettling film.
Lisa Schwarzbaum, Entertainment Weekly, 2011-04-13