The 474th film I have seen in theaters…
We are all hostiles
Captain Blocker of the US Cavalry is tasked with escorting his old nemesis, Chief Yellow Hawk back to his home in Montana, there to die of cancer. As the group makes their way north from New Mexico, they discover a woman, Rosalie, the sole survivor in her family of a Comanche attack. The group puts aside their hatred for each other as they fight their way north.
Christian Bale is Blocker. This is a man that spent the last 25 years killing and rounding up the natives. He absolutely hates Yellow Hawk, but does his duty despite his feelings. Bale is a powerhouse actor, putting his all into every performance. He continues that here. With Daniel Day-Lewis out of the picture, he may rise to the top of the acting world.
Rosamund Pike has come a long way since Die Another Day. Her work here as Rosalie was stunning, heartbreaking, amazing.
Wes Studi continues to do what he’s always done- portray Native Americans as they actually are. No gimmicks, no BS. He’s always good. I liked that Yellow Hawk was just as vicious as anyone else in the film. His impending death gives him a new perspective on things.
Ben Foster is here as a deserter that Blocker is tasked with escorting north for court martial, presumably for appearing as Medivh in Warcraft.
Rory Cochrane is Metz, Blocker’s friend and fellow soldier. He is suffering from intense depression, and Cochrane makes this a powerful part of the film.
Jesse Plemmons continues to choose great roles as he plays Kidder, the West Point graduate.
Adam Beach rounds out the main cast as Black Hawk, son of the chief. A good performance, wish he was used more.
This was a solid Western, which looks into the brutality of both the Americans and the Natives in this tough time in my nation’s history. The performances are on point, practically a cavalcade of awesome character actors, led by strong work by Bale and Pike. Scott Cooper did a fine job writing and directing the film while Masanobu Takayanagi uses the amazing scenery of the American west to give us terrific shots. The end kind of devolves into nonsense as the old doctor from Walking Dead shows up and gets into a shoot out, killing all of the secondary characters, but what can ya do. The movie needed an action packed ending it seems. Overall, a good movie. 6/10