An interesting little drama that’s light on incident but big on character, Trucker is a welcome showcase for the acting talents of Michelle Monaghan. Having been a solid support player in Kiss Kiss Bang Bang and Gone Baby Gone, here Monaghan takes centre stage as Diane, the eponymous long distance big-rig driver who, much like Clooney’s Ryan Bingham in Up in the Air, is a professional loner, wanting nothing more than to live life her own way, doing whatever with whomever she chooses. Diane is considerably lower on the pay scale than Bingham though, and when the son that she openly walked out on 10 years earlier is forced back into her life, her independent existence is completely shaken.
Even given the unlikelihood of there ever being a real-life trucker anywhere near as gorgeous as her, Monaghan is utterly convincing in the part. First time filmmaker James Mottern also deserves praise for so successfully inverting Hollywood gender norms. While Diane is the film’s foul-mouthed, foul-tempered centre, it is the men in the story who bring the traditionally ‘feminine’ warmth and concern, with Serenity’s Nathan Fillion particularly good as the drinking buddy who longs to get closer.
Playing at GFT 21-24th March. This review first published in The List magazine.