Shot in black and white, it tells the story of aging father Woody, played by Bruce Dern, who believes he’s won $1,000,000 and resolves to get to Lincoln, Nebraska from his home in Billings, Montana to collect it – meaning he has to walk because he is no longer allowed to drive a car. His son David, played by Will Forte, has to repeatedly pick him up from the side of the road before finally agreeing to drive him to Nebraska. Along the way, they make a stop in Hawthorne, Nebraska where Woody and his wife Kate, played by June Squibb, grew up and met. Long story short, there is more to Woody’s life than he lets on, being a man of very few words, and he and David are able to bond along the way.
Dern is perfect as Woody, capturing his faults as well as his strengths. Squibb is hilarious as Kate, a fearless old woman who’s not afraid to say exactly what she’s thinking but really has a good heart underneath it all. And Forte makes a great performance as David as he grows into a man who can give his father exactly what he wants and needs late in his life.
This is definitely a film to see, whether you’re able to rush out to the theater or if you have to wait until it’s available to rent or watch on Netflix. Just watch it. Maybe with your parents, because really, it’s about family and the often-unspoken feelings we share for one another as parents and children.
I’ll leave you with the trailer, in case I haven’t already convinced you to go see it.