A lot of eyes will be on Chloe Zhao‘s Nomadland when it plays the 2020 Venice Film Festival, and thereafter the all-virtual Toronto Film Festival plus the NY Film Festival. Based on Jessica Bruder‘s same-titled book and set in the aftermath of the 2009 recession, it’s about a sporadically employed, cash-strapped Frances McDormand roaming around the western regions in a camper. We’re familiar with Zhao’s style and inclinations based on The Rider (’17). Understatement + lethargy + melancholy. Downmarket protagonist of relatively few words in a tough spot, no easy way out of the mire, some kind of difficult decision has to be made, etc. And then a third-act climax that may feel more somber than wowser. Or perhaps not.