AUDIO: Listen to Tim’s review of “Hostiles” on “The KQ Morning Show” with Tom Barnard. Segment begins 12 minutes in.
Christian Bale leads an impressive cast in a film that never realizes its full potential in “Hostiles,” a meandering, post-Civil War period film from Scott Cooper (“Crazy Heart,” “Black Mass”). Finally expanding into theaters after an unsuccessful awards season run, “Hostiles” likely won’t have the steam to last long in theaters despite the best efforts of Bale and company.
“Hostiles” is set in 1892, when a well-regarded Calvary captain (Bale) is tasked by the U.S. president to transport a dying Cheyenne war chief (Wes Studi) and his family from New Mexico back to the chief’s tribal land in Montana. Reluctant to take on the mission because the chief was responsible for the deaths of several of his friends, the captain embarks on horseback with a traveling party for what is supposed to be his last mission before he retires. Sworn enemies at the beginning, as the captain and the chief trek through brutal territory where they are safe from no one, and eventually realize they must band together if they are going to survive the brutal environs.
Although “Hostiles” shows tremendous promise at the beginning, the film never gains any momentum, despite the best efforts of Bale, Studi and Rosamund Pike as woman who suffered a horrific family tragedy that the dangerous, unforgiving ride. The film moves as slow as the horses the cast members ride upon, as any moments of intensity are far outweighed by long, uneventful stretches that sadly lead to a predictable outcome.
Lammometer: 6 (out of 10)
Tim Lammers reviews movies weekly for The KQ92 Morning Show,” “KARE 11 News at 11” (NBC), “The Tom Barnard Podcast” and “The BS Show” with Bob Sansevere.
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