I came across this on Amazon Prime, loved it, and it has a great cast.
We start off with Purvis (David Arquette) and Buddy (Sid Haig), and they are killing people and stealing from them out in some mountainous area. Purvis is not great at killing, but Buddy is the old sage. Unfortunately for them, they hear a horse in the distance, so they take off to go into hiding. Purvis is skeptical of where they are heading, but they are hearing stuff from various directions, and come across a burial ground, probably for Indians. Purvis is scared, but this seems like the best play. They hear movement, and then Buddy gets an arrow to the throat. Purvis takes off as a being is attacking Buddy. Purvis accidentally knocks over a skull.
Welcome to the town of Bright Hope. We meet Arthur (Patrick Wilson) who has a busted leg and is injured for the next 12 weeks. His woman, Samantha is clearly irritating him, she’s trying to be optimistic, but he’s frustrated. We see Purvis busying what he stole. We meet Brooder (Matthew Fox) in the old saloon. There’s an old dude who plays piano for some drinks. He’s a solid drunk.
We meet Sheriff Hunt (Kurt Russell) and Chicory (Richard Jenkins), and Sheriff is going to feed his backup deputy some hot soup. Chicory tells him about seeing a guy while he was out on a ramble, and he didn’t recognize him. He noticed that this stranger, Purvis, was burying something in the ground. Time to go meet our stranger. Samantha and Arthur are having some sex, and my goodness, she is a treat. She was riding him, but he wants to do this the right way, with him on top. Hunt and chicory find Purvis in the bar, and he is claiming that his name is Buddy. Hunt is interrogating him, and Purvis is acting awfully suspicious. So he asks about the hole, and Purvis tries to run, so Hunt shoots him in the foot, and he needs medical attention. Sam and Arthur are working on cleaning his busted leg. Brooder shows up to get Sam as she’s the next best thing to Doc Taylor, who is drunk. Nick is another deputy, and he is good at checkers. OK, I feel that we have met most of our main characters. Purvis has a fever, so Sam and Nick will stay the night to monitor him.
A black dude hears a ruckus out in the stables, checks on it, gets his throat slit and a spear through the head. Good bye Buford.
There’s Lorna, the Sheriff’s wife. She’s making food, and Clarence tells Sheriff of what he found, and he said nobody was at the jail. They inspect the barn, Buford is still there. They check the jail, and there is an arrow, so they fear Indian abduction. Hunt tells Arthur, and Arthur is pissed and they meet up at the Learned Goat. They have an Indian who has an idea of who it is, and he is afraid of them, these troglodytes. Hunt asks why they didn’t eat Buford, and Chicory asks if it’s because they think black people are poisonous. Sheriff, Arthur, Chicory, and Brooder are gonna mount up to this terrible territory and try to get back Nick and Samantha. There are a lot of witty one lines, mainly by Chicory. Lorna is giving Sheriff some guff on him leaving. Oh, his name is Franklin Hunt. Yay, a first name. Chicory puts some flowers on his wive’s grave, and he’s not sure if he will make it back. And off the 4 men go.
Brooder is setting up defenses, and a line of bells. Brooder is bragging about how smart he is for having never been married. Brooder is a cocky dick, and my favorite character. Him and Chicory. Chicory is telling Sheriff that he has a hard time reading a book in the tub because he always gets the pages or book wet. Brooder just shot an animal that set off a bell, because he is one fast hombre. Arthur took off his boot and it was actually agonizing to watch. Watching him apply the alcohol to his broken leg is agony. Sheriff wants Arthur’s opium, and he don’t wish to yield it, but he begrudgingly does. Sheriff is worried about the infection turning into gang green. At night, a guy shows up and scares our group. So there is a showdown. Sheriff is having them step closer, but Brooder just shoots them down. Brooder thinks that they were scouts, and they should move to a different camp for a defensive position. So they move along at night. Chicory is pissed at Brooder for shooting the Mexicans, mainly because one was wearing a crucifix.
They got sneak attacked, and Arthur gets the kill on one, but Brooder’s horse got killed because she was smart and loyal to him. Brooder has to go put her down. So they no longer have horses. They will have to continue this on foot, which is going to be tough. Arthur is not going to get much sleep trying to stay on pace. They pass him during the day, and they will leave a pile of 4 rocks every so often as a trail. Arthur makes it to camp. They rest, they wake up, Brooder makes a comment with some innuendo behind it, so he gets punched by Arthur. Arthur’s leg is fucked. They gotta do work on it. Chicory sets the leg with a hammer, and he’s knocked out between the pain and opium. At night, they hear some noises, like a howling or horn. I also love Chicory’s line “It is the official opinion of the back up deputy” and then something ridiculous. Brooder’s mom and sister were killed by Indians, and that is why he hates Indians. “Deputy, is it possible for you to close that aperture?”
It’s daytime, and time to monitor with the German (like a looking glass). They are following some tracks now. They go under this overpass, and hear the noise more. There’s this path with some tight fits and an overpass every now and again. Brooder is going to investigate, and he’s not back in 30 seconds, the fellas are to retreat. Sheriff has the pocket watch out and hear the howl. They got the signal that it is clear to move up a bit. Suddenly, all are attacked by arrows. Chicory got nicked in the head, but they killed 2 or 3 of these dust or ash covered attackers. Brooder is fucking doe. Sheriff got an arrow lodged in his left bicep. Brooder wants the dynamite and lit cigar, as he won’t live as a cripple. Brooder is under attack, now it 4 on 2 with Sheriff and Chicory against the savages. This is some messed up shit. They put this horn or a bone in Sheriff’s mouth and then knocked him out. Brooder is dead, and our guys are getting dragged via rope up to the cave. These savages have a way to make this weird noise from their throat.
They make it in the cave and there’s Samantha. Nick is unconscious. They are restrained behind these primitive bars. Chicory and Sheriff are in one cell. Uh oh, they are taking Nick out of his cell, and there’s 2 of them. They take off his clothes, and there’s lots of man ass. Sheriff and Chicory are trying to break out, and they chopped off a finger or 2 from Sheriff’s hand. Nick is awake and tells him about Purvis. Nick asks Sheriff to take care of his stuff. They scalped Nick, shoved that in his mouth, and held him up by his legs and chopped him right now the middle. Very graphic.
Chicory asks if there is any truth to the Sheriff telling Nick that there would be a cavalry, but it’s not true. Sam asks about Arthur’s condition. They tell her about the trail. She says that this is why frontier life is so hard, because the guys are idiots, including Arthur. There are at least 12 males, and 2 pregnant females who are blind. The plan is to poison them with opium. Alright. Arthur is awake and delusional. He’s having a bad time making his way. He is praying for some help as he’s crawling at this point. He has run out of water.
They entice the savages with the beverage and he pounds that shit. Well, now he will share. Sam is still being all pissy, that even if with the 3 dead, plus 2 more from opium, that’s still seven. 2 attack Arthur as he’s sleeping and he kills them. Arthur inspects one of them that he killed, and looks at the throat, where they have the weird thing that allows them to make the sounds. Arthur now owns it basically. He makes it to the spot where Sheriff and Chicory got abducted. He’s smart enough to take a different path. He uses the whistle thing and gets one to approach really fast, and he guns him down. Nobody is coming despite all the gun shots?
Sheriff is encouraging Sam to eat some of the bird that they gave her. Chicory tells them a story about some flea circus, and Chicory was so entertained. He thought it was real. He believes those fleas are alive and talented. Sam says that they were legit fleas just to put a smile on his face. She stopped being a bitch for a moment. How nice. Now the primal call again. They dragged in their dead. They remove 2 bars from Sheriff’s cage, and he comes out fighting and knock him to the ground. Chicory tries to help but to no avail. They cut open Sheriff’s belly and put the flaming hot flask in the wound. They then shoot his hand. Next he tries to shoot him in the dock, but doesn’t know how to reload. Outside, we hear that Arthur is shooting fools. The savage reloads and shoots Sheriff in the torso. Sheriff chops off part of the savage’s foot. and then kills him, but put up a hell of a fight. Arthur checks on his wife, and Sheriff is dying, but Chicory is OK at least. He tells them to go out the way they came and to get his rifle. Sam thanks him. Chicory looks so lost and sad. Sheriff asks him to say goodbye to his wife, and he will say hello to Chicory’s.
They go to make their escape and come across the blinded pregnant women. Poor women, they looked like they were in such a bad state. Arthur, Samantha, and Chicory go past the original burial ground and they make their way back home. She’s so uptight that she won’t kiss Arthur because of the mouthpiece until he washes his mouth. We hear 2 more gunshots, and they walk away.
Final Thoughts – This movie simply has so many interesting elements. At it’s heart, it’s a western. There are also 10-20 great one liners that will make you laugh. There’s also some serious violence and gore. So it accomplishes being all of these things, in a brilliant way. I thought Richard Jenkins and Matthew Fox stole the show. Kurt Russell was also amazing as was Sid Haig and Arquette in their smaller roles. The one character that I never got 100% behind was Arthur. I wanted to like him more, and I understood his motivation and all of that, but he was just missing something. Brooder was by far my favorite character. The setting, the visuals, everything is here for a very enjoyable experience, even if you don’t like westerns.
Rating – 7.2 Lots to love here. The ending….that’s the weakest part, but because it’s the ending, it can’t reach 8.0 territory.
The pictures used in this blog are for review purposes only. They are the property of Caliber Media Company and whoever else may own it. Please, find this movie and watch it. You won’t regret it.