The Mythic West Dies and Rides Again at Hands of Two Atypical Heroes
On Film: Lean on Pete, The Rider
English director Andrew Haigh and Chinese director Chloe Zhao offer eulogies to the American Dream while spurring a new brand of male hero into the Western arena. Though they are barely men, Charley and Brady mark a newfound maturity in the cowboy genre for their ability to cope with loss -- without surrendering a gritty spirit of survival, or a will to love.
Murder, He Wrote
Movie review: The Hateful Eight
Quentin Tarantino creates a self-conscious cartoon that puts a bullet through the brain of western myth
Director trades quick-draws for Slow West
First-time feature director John Maclean takes on western archetype and the core ideals of the American ethos in Slow West, his Sundance-winning feature starring Michael Fassbender and Kodi Smit-McPhee
By Katherine Monk
It's a genre marked by star-shaped badges and John Wayne’s lanky swagger, an optimistic ode to masculine heroes and horses. Yet, for all the fanatical affection lathered on westerns as a fundamental part of the American identity, historically speaking, most westerns are horse manure.
It’s a point John Maclean isn’t all that eager to assert right off the top, given he’s a Scotsman and his debut feature, Slow West, takes the viewer straight back to the open prairie and the romantic vistas revealed in early John Ford movies.
“Being Scottish, and tackling such a sacred American genre certainly crossed my mind the first time I watched it with an audience in the U.S.,” says Maclean, shortly after the film’s world premiere at the Sundance film festival, ...
Michael Douglas talks Beyond the Reach
Veteran actor and producer Michael Douglas teams up with rising British star Jeremy Irvine in what feels like a live-action version of Road Runner, Beyond the Reach
By Katherine Monk
TORONTO – It manifested instantly, a dust devil rising from the feet of Michael Douglas’s Italian loafers and swirling through Jeremy Irvine’s feathery mop of sandy blond hair: A howling acknowledgement of Hollywood’s discriminatory practices when it comes to weight and overall body image.
“A lot of actors are told they need to lose weight, or change their body. I was talking to Channing Tatum just recently and asked him why he was just drinking water, and he said it was because he had to go to the gym in two hours,” says Irvine, the young British actor who hit the radar in Steven Spielberg’s War Horse and now stars opposite Douglas in the new film, Beyond the Reach, currently playing in select theatres and available on-demand.
A cat-and-mouse thriller ...