About the book
This eBook is a crucial roadmap to the inner-workings of Leave No Trace. If you loved the film, you won’t want to miss Elena Lazic’s interviews with director Debra Granik and cinematographer Michael McDonough, as well as Alex Heeney’s interview with editor Jane Rizzo, and her thorough interrogation of every facet of Ben Foster’s performance and oeuvre, based on a conversation with the actor himself.
Inside, you’ll also find Gillie Collins’ essay about the film as a coming-of-age story; Orla Smith’s in-depth analysis of Thomasin McKensie’s role in the film; and Brett Pardy’s important meditation on Granik’s representation of poverty.
Bursting with exclusive content and incisive analyses, this is an eBook to read and cherish. Make it yours now.
Listen to the podcast
Preview the book with our podcast on Lean on Pete where we discuss the insights gleaned from writing and researching the book.
Essay: Growing up and growing apart
An essay by Contributing Editor Gillie Collins on how Leave No Trace externalizes the process of an adolescent separating from a parent
Interview: Debra Granik
Debra Granik discusses what made her want to turn this story into a film, her non-judgmental outlook on her characters, her research process, and her collaboration with her director of photography and lead actors.
Essay: Debra Granik frames poverty as a systemic failure to empathize
An essay by Associate Editor Brett Pardy on how Debra Granik’s films — Down to the Bone, Stray Dog, and Leave No Trace — focus on individuals who struggle to navigate an unfriendly social support system in an attempt to get help.
Interview: Cinematographer Michael McDonough
Cinematographer Michael McDonough discusses collaborating with Debra Granik and the actors on Leave No Trace, choosing lenses, reflecting how the characters feel about their environment, and applying his TV experience.
Ben Foster on silence and trauma in Leave No Trace
An essay/interview hybrid by Alex Heeney analyzes Ben Foster’s Leave No Trace performance, including an interview with the actor on how he created the character.
Familiar Faces: Ben Foster’s subtle depictions of trauma
An essay by Alex Heeney examining Ben Foster’s career and his ongoing interest in portraying complicated men with some relationship to trauma, in as quiet and subtle way as possible.
Interview: Editor Jane Rizzo
Editor Jane Rizzo discusses cutting Leave No Trace, developing the father-daughter relationship, building the soundscapes for different locations, and restructuring the story in the edit.
Thomasin McKenzie tracks every step toward independence
An essay by Executive Editor Orla Smith on Thomasin McKenzie’s lead performance in the film.
About the authors
Gillie Collins is Editor-at-Large at Seventh Row and has written for Bomb Magazine.
Alex founded Seventh Row several years ago, and has shaped it into a vital source of original film criticism.
Elena is a Contributing Editor at Seventh Row and works as a freelance writer for SciFi Now, Little White Lies, and The Guardian.
Brett Pardy is a Ph.D. Candidate at McGill University studying how people learn empathy through watching films.
Orla is a filmmaker and film critic and has written several pieces analyzing specific film performances.