Film review by Steve Duffy –
Set in 1892, Hostiles tells the story of a legendary Army Captain (Christian Bale), who after stern resistance, reluctantly agrees to escort a dying Cheyenne war chief (Wes Studi) and his family back to tribal lands. Making the harrowing and perilous journey from Fort Berringer, an isolated Army outpost in New Mexico, to the grasslands of Montana, the former rivals encounter a young widow (Rosamund Pike), whose family was murdered on the plains. Together, they must join forces to overcome the punishing landscape, hostile Comanche, and vicious outliers that they encounter along the way.
Christian Bale delivers a rugged and raw performance in “Hostiles.”
Rosamund Pike’s portrayal of a grieving and angry women is felt because of the source of her loss- the graphic and savage opening scene.
The dream supporting cast includes Jesse Plemons, Rory Cochrane, and Timotheè Chalamet as officers under Blocker’s command
At times, Hostiles, does deliver the classic western vibe, while trying its best to stay away from many of its genre’s clichés. There are lots of gun battles and gritty violence balanced with beautiful landscapes of Mexico where the movie was filmed.
There may not be a lot of character development and the story focuses more on mood than anything, plus it even feels longer than it is, but sometimes it good to just sit back and watch an old-fashioned western, especially in the dead of winter.
RATING: R for strong violence, and language
RUNTIME: 135 minutes