In the land of blood and honey

Monumental Pictures

American Honey, a sprawling ramble across the parched backroads of the southern United States, is a journey that becomes a ride-or-die in one of its opening scenes. After unsuccessfully hitching a ride home from salvaging precious little discarded supermarket scraps, the sunlight so piercing that the pungent smell is palpable even on a screen, Star (newcomer Sasha Lane) and her two younger siblings head for the local Walmart in search of a small mercy of Mountain Dew. While the siblings quickly head for the fluorescent-lit refrigerators holding the golden green liquid, Star hangs near the front of the store, watching children sift through cages of rubber balls to lengthen their time in the air-conditioned oasis. Then, as if Star was living in a Mountain Dew commercial itself, We Found Love starts to play.

In a sea of rubber rings, balloons, and cheap t-shirts, she catches the eye of a young…

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