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The role of the aimless young rebel hiding behind an emotional wall and steely eyes has been monopolized by men in the movies since James Dean. Samantha Morton, one of her generation's most gifted actors, makes the most of her opportunity to embody such a figure in her role as the title character of MORVERN CALLAR. Momentarily frozen by the suicide of her boyfriend, Morvern mines two words from his brief suicide note: be brave. Finally removing his body from the apartment floor, she buries her boyfriend, pocketing the funeral money he left. She also courts publishers, claiming authorship of the novel he left behind as his legacy. Her new financial freedom and sense of mortality brings Morvern, joined by her co-worker Lana (Kathleen McDermott), out of her bleak surroundings to a Spanish resort where the two are surrounded by fellow clubbers.
Lynne Ramsay (RATCATCHER) evokes emotion through landscape as Morvern and Lana flee the dreary Scottish winter for a Spanish coastal town bathed in sunlight. Working from Alan Warner's novel, Ramsay uses powerful imagery and a soundtrack vacillating between contemplative silence, abrasive sound effects, and hip music to create a purely cinematic work, avoiding the trappings of an adaptation.