Beautifully realized, involving film is pure Sayles
With its leisurely pace, unusual structure, and highly ambiguous ending (not to mention a nonexistent marketing campaign), Limbo will quite likely divide the small audience that sees it. This is a terrible shame, as John Sayles is at the top of his game. Set in Alaska, Limbo comments incisively on a variety of complex issues concerning the vast state -- the relentless tourism, the scarcity of meaningful employment for the working class, and the careless abuses of irreplaceable natural resources by the wealthy, to name a few. All of these interesting themes, however, are discarded half-way through in favor of a thought-provoking story of human survival that will undoubtedly light a fire for some while irritating and alienating others. Sayles has not always connected with me, but I was deeply moved by Limbo (especially the rich characterizations provided by Martinez, Mastrantonio, and Sayles regular Strathairn) -- and I absolutely loved the gutsy ending, which continues to occupy my thoughts.