Wednesday, October 12, 2011

"Blackthorn ". Early movie review.


Cast: Sam Shepard, Eduardo Norigea

Writer: Miguel Barros

Director:  Mateo Gil

**'s out of four

"Blackthorn" wants to be a worthy companion to the classic "Butch Cassidy and The Sundance Kid", and I admire the filmmakers for trying to do an old school style kind of western.  Hell I admire that there isn't any cgi or impressive camera techniques that call attention to itself.   I just don't understand why this had to use the character of Butch Cassidy in this.  Any other older cowboy character would have been just fine.

In this fictional western Butch Cassidy(Sam Shepard) is shown to have survived the shootout that was meant to take the lives of him and the Sundance kid.  He lives a quiet life with his spanish girlfriend and goes by the name James Blackthorn.  On his way home he meets a thief Eduardo Apodaca (Eduardo Noreiga) who has stolen money from the Government and offers to give Blackthorn half if he helps him.   The two form a partnership to look for the loot while lawmen and other thieves seek them out.

(Thanks to for the embed code )

The film jumps back and forth between their search of the money and flashbacks of a young Butch Cassidy(Nikolaj Coster-Waldau) and The Sundance Kid(Padraic Delaney) on their adventures in the past.  The flashback scenes never added anything to the present story and they look like they come from a different movie.  The two actors who played the younger versions of Cassidy and Sundance have much better screen chemistry than Shepard and NoriegaSam Shepard is good in this role, but this type of character could have easily been played by anyone else.  I imagine someone like Jeff Bridges or Sam Elliot taking on this role too.

 This is Maeto Gil's first feature length film.  His most well known credit was co writer of "Open Your Eyes"(also starring Eduardo Noreiga) Which was later remade as "Vanilla Sky".  He's a competent enough director to get good performances from his actors, but he should have worked more on the story itself.

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