After seeing Frozen River, a correspondent sent me a mini-review of it:I thought "Frozen River" was a fairly strong Native-oriented film by a non-Native writer/director. It's even a little stronger than "Imprint" in that it effectively uses genre elements like suspense and tension to draw the viewer in and is even more successful than "Imprint" in creating a sympathetic lead character (I always found Tonatzin Carmelo's performance in "Imprint" a little icy and inaccessible). Back to "Frozen River," I had a few problems with some of its simplistic storytelling devices, amateurish local performances (but how do you help that when you're casting in the community, but Michael O'Keefe in a small role balances it out) and sometimes frustratingly undisciplined filmmaking choices (which I'm sure could all be attributable to a low budget and tight shooting schedule). But overall the scenes introducing us to a culture (and criminal subculture of human smuggling) and region of the country that most of us aren't familiar with, along with the scenes conveying a matter-of-fact but palpable sense of danger, in addition to a fearless, career-defining performance by Melissa Leo as well as an impressive effort by "Edge of America's" Misty Upham, definitely make the film worth seeing.Comment: I've edited this mini-review slightly because it was only two sentences originally, not four. Watch your run-on sentences, friend.
Since I gave Imprint an 8.5 of 10, a film that's better would truly be something special. But I haven't seen Frozen River yet or agreed it's better. ;-)