Following the Wall Street Crash of October 1929, America was thrown into a decade of high unemployment, deflation and widespread poverty. This period came to be known as the Great Depression and spread across much of the developed and developing world. Growing up during this time was hard, to say the least. Opportunities were scarce and both work and money were hard to come by. This is the setting for Miles Joris-Peyrafitte’s new film Dreamland.
Eugene Evans (Finn Cole) is a young man living in a dead-end rural Texas town who dreams of escaping to make a better life for himself. When he learns that a notorious bank robber, Allison Wells (Margot Robbie), is on the loose with a bounty on her head, he sees the reward for her capture as a way out. However, when he discovers her hiding, injured, this determination soon begins to waiver.
Dreamland uses the tumultuous weather and rugged isolation of the region as a startling backdrop to an impeccably made period drama. Lyle Vincent’s beautiful cinematography brings the setting and era to life. Whilst the romance between Eugene and Allison feels a little thin, at times, their circumstances ring true. Dreamland is driven by Robbie. Her performance illuminates a rather threadbare tale, but it never quite achieves the freedom everyone desires.
Dreamland is out in UK cinemas on 11 December.