7.2/10
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251 user 172 critic

Leave No Trace (2018)

PG | | Drama | 29 June 2018 (UK)
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A father and his thirteen year-old daughter are living an ideal existence in a vast urban park in Portland, Oregon, when a small mistake derails their lives forever.

Director:

Debra Granik

Writers:

Debra Granik (screenplay by), Anne Rosellini (screenplay by) | 1 more credit »
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Popularity
1,945 ( 227)
17 wins & 77 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Thomasin McKenzie ... Tom (as Thomasin Harcourt McKenzie)
Ben Foster ... Will
Jeffery Rifflard Jeffery Rifflard ... Vet at VA (as Jeff Rifflard)
Derek John Drescher Derek John Drescher ... Larry (as Derek Drescher)
Michael Draper ... Runner
Peter Simpson ... Police Officer
Erik McGlothlin Erik McGlothlin ... K-9 Officer
Dana Millican ... Jean
Alyssa McKay Alyssa McKay ... Valerie (as Alyssa Lynn)
Ryan Joiner Ryan Joiner ... Tiffany (as Ryan E. Joiner)
Michael J. Prosser Michael J. Prosser ... James (as Mike Prosser)
Jeff Kober ... Mr. Walters
Spencer S. Hanley ... Pastor
Tamera Westlake Tamera Westlake ... Devotional Dancer
Bob Werfelman Bob Werfelman ... Bob
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Storyline

Will (Ben Foster) and his teenage daughter, Tom (Thomasin Harcourt McKenzie), have lived off the grid for years in the forests of Portland, Oregon. When their idyllic life is shattered, both are put into social services. After clashing with their new surroundings, Will and Tom set off on a harrowing journey back to their wild homeland. The film is directed by Debra Granik from a script adapted by Granik and Anne Rosellini. Written by Bleecker Street

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for thematic material throughout | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official Facebook | Official site

Country:

USA | Canada

Language:

English

Release Date:

29 June 2018 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Leave No Trace See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$219,140, 1 July 2018, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$6,046,104, 4 October 2018
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

At the end of the credits, a leaf in the shape of a hippocampus is seen, just like Tom's collar and the oranges' skins. See more »

Goofs

Will places the analog TV set in his closet, and there is a dish antenna on the house's roof, showing it worked, putting the time at before 2009. While Will and Tom are getting a ride, the truck driver states that marijuana is legal, which was not true in Oregon until 2015. See more »

Quotes

Tom: What's your favourite color?
Will: What's *your* favourite color?
Tom: Yellow.
[They sit for a moment]
Tom: What was my mother's favourite color?
Will: Yellow.
Tom: Maybe I learnt it from her. I wish I could remember her.
Will: She'd wish for that, too.
See more »

Soundtracks

Moon Boat
Written by Kendra Smith, Bryan Norkunas, Alex Pfeffer (as Alex Peffer)
Performed by Kendra Smith and the Magician's Orchestra
Published by Northern Line Music (BMI)
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Leave No Trace poignantly flourishes in depicting a dynamically engrossing family bond.
5 July 2018 | by TheMovieDioramaSee all my reviews

Indie dramas just keep getting better as the years go by. The freedom to be experimental whilst conveying a captivating story makes for a vastly enthralling cinematic experience than the average Hollywood drama. It's no different here, with director Granik perfectly balancing emotional heft with relentless drama. A father and his young daughter live in isolation within a shrouded urban forest, where one mistake leads them into being found by the local authorities. The eloquence and minimalism in Granik's screenplay allows the story to be told visually. The peaceful environment and rural American culture juxtapose the bustling highways of urban society. Yet they complement each other to create an ecosystem for humanity. The same is applied to this relationship. The father, fearful of being discovered and conforming to the aristocracy of modern civilisation, contrasts with his daughter who yearns for environmental stability. After experiencing a glimpse of normality, she envies them. However, it's the bond between them that truly captivated me. They never argue. They never bicker. They understand one another. Mistakes are forgiven, opportunities are seized. It was honestly beautiful to watch. Foster (who is becoming rather commendable with his work) and McKenzie were sensational together, feeding emotions through just their eyes. Granik utilises plenty of horizonal techniques to illustrate these two characters amongst the overwhelmingly luscious foliage. McDonough's cinematography was gorgeous, bountiful of green filters and natural lighting. My only gripe is the lack of backstory, particularly with the mother, which would've elevated the emotional response for the story's conclusion. But what I really appreciate is the unobtrusive approach to what could've been a sensationalistic plot, and the lack of pretentiousness further cements Granik as a mature director who really should be directing more films. A near perfect drama with outstanding performances that deserves your undivided attention.


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