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Wotcha. We're back in full effect after the Xmas slowdown, and for entirely obvious reasons we're looking at Westerns.
We start off discussing Unforgiven, which two thirds of us think is fabulous and one third dissent. Boo! An almost inverted tale of redemption as Clint Eastwood takes on one last job, it's chock full of supreme performances and deserves its widespread acclaim.
The release of The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford prompted this little outburst, and it's a interesting little character piece even if I can't quite get behind the climate of critical acclaim. the story is, well, in the title really.
Open Range is up next, which is probably the most traditional of the westerns we'll cover. Perhaps the most slow burning of the lot also, with strong characters building tension towards an explosive finale.
Seraphim Falls, another recent release but easily the least of the films we'll cover. Starts off intriguingly enough with Pierce Brosnan being chased by Liam Neeson for reasons that start off mysterious and are clarified over the course of the piece before falling apart totally in the final reels. Recommendation to avoid.
Next, The Proposition, a brutal tale of a criminal family full of strong performances and nasty violence. The roughest, nastiest of the films we'll talk about, it's also a very good film despite the rather skeletal story. The least traditional and certainly the grittiest of the films we'll cover, and a very good movie.
We round out with The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada, another recent, bleak outing seeing Tommy Lee Jones directing and starring in a tale that unfolds at a stately pace, but is well worth staying with as a meditation on crime and punishment as much as for the great performances and intriguing story.
If all goes to plan, we'll be back next week with our picks of 2007.