The Ozarks come off as another universe altogether in Winter’s Bone
, a momentous achievement for director Debra Granik, and a showcase for the talents of relative newcomer Jennifer Lawrence and character actor John Hawkes. Lawrence plays Ree Dolly, a 17-year-old living in a rundown cabin in the woods. Her father has disappeared; her mother sits around all day with a vacant stare; and her younger brother and sister depend on her for food and guidance. The sheriff (Garret Dillahunt) shows up one day and informs Ree that she has a problem: Her convict dad is supposedly cooking drugs again, and he’s now a fugitive. As a result, Ree and her family could lose their property. Hawkes plays Ree’s uncle Teardrop, a foul-tempered man who helps Ree after some initial hesitations. Both performances are spectacular, and Lawrence is one of 2010’s breakout stars.