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Bone Tomahawk (2015)
Written by: The Arrow
Director: S. Craig Zahler

Starring:
Kurt Russell/Sheriff Franklin
Richard Jenkins/Chicory
Patrick Wilson/Arthur
Matthew Fox/Brooder
8 10
PLOT-CRUNCH
When a group of cannibalistic inbred savages kidnap some honest to goodness folks (to be impending lunch); Sherriff Hunt (Russell) and a few good men head out in the wild to save them and pump evil full of lead.
THE LOWDOWN

I’m a huge fan of KURT RUSSELL (Then again…who isn’t?) and when I heard that he was going to star in a horror/western, I was in film fan heaven! Kurt f-ing Russell in a film that blends two of my favorite genres together?!!! How can they go wrong?! BONE TOMAHAWK has been on my radar ever since. Now I did find it odd that the film’s marketing has been so low key thus far. I mean it comes out this coming October 23rd (limited sadly) and we haven’t even seen a trailer yet. Maybe that's a bad omen I thought. Well now that I’ve seen it, let me reassure you - the movie f*cking rocks!

BONE TOMAHAWK was written and directed (in a no frills manner) by novelist S. Craig Zahler in his directorial debut and the story was simple enough. Baddies kidnap good guys, more good guys trek across the land to save the kidnapped folks and kill said baddies. A classic Western scenario but pushed further in terms of the nature of the villains! And for the first 87 minutes or so you never would have thought that this was a horror western. Once the set up out of the way, it became a men on a mission/camp fire movie. Meaning: they travel to reach their goal, obstacles are tossed their way, they overcome them, sit around a campfire at night, fall asleep, next day they wake up, rinse and repeat. Although there were some pacing issues during that stretch and I would have hinted at the horror to come further; I found the chain of events mucho engaging none the less due to mishaps that befell them, the awesome chemistry between the well defined characters and their amusing banter. 

This was definitely a funnier movie than I thought it would be. Not “kick in the balls” funny, but more circumstantially humorous via clever dialogue and bang-on deliveries. It sure helped matters that the cast was simply AMAZING. Patrick Wilson once again delivered a well rounded show, Richard Jenkins was mucho likeable and brought in some laughs as the faux deputy who worships the Sherriff, Matthew Fox went on to steal many of the scenes he was in as the arrogant yet endearing gun slinger (think a Doc Holiday type from Tombstone) and Kurt Russell… well he’s f*cking Kurt Russell…what do you think?! The lad hasn’t played a cowboy since Tombstone in 1993 and yeah, it was a blast seeing him pimping that stache, cowboy hat and that nobility once again. You bet your sweet ass the film gave him enough “America F*ck Yeah” hero moments to carve a smile on my face. Russell still got the magic Cowboy touch and it was BEYOND a pleasure seeing him ride on once again. 

What about the horror you may ask? Well once it finally kicked in, damn boy, hold on to your sombreros, it got ugly! Let me just say that the last act went for the kill… literally. DAMN! It stomped my skull into ashes, rolled me up and smoked me.  I can safely say that the picture sported one of the most graphic and memorable kills that I’ve seen all year! Brace yourselves, you will wince like a school girl getting the paddle! Add to all that some genuine suspense, a low key score (by Jeff Herriott & S. Craig Zahler) that worked in the film’s favor, some slick cameos (Sid Haig, Michael Pare, David Arquette), frightening foes and a handful of novel ideas (like how the savages communicate) and you get a badass horror western that rewards the patience of its audience and then some!

On the flip side, running at 133 minutes,15 minutes or so of fat could have been snipped out in the name of pacing. And like I said earlier, I would have hinted a bit more at the horror to come throughout, but that’s just me. And was I alone in thinking that there weren't enough close-ups in some scenes? I kept thinking to myself “punch in goddamit – punch in”, I want to get closer to these characters! Creative choice? First time director slip up? Either way, it didn't work for me. On the whole though, being that I can clock Kurt Russell twirl his mustache for 5 hours and be highly entertained, it was hard for BONE TOMAHAWK to let me down. Even when the action was on the low jive I was still involved because I love Westerns, loved these characters, was taken by their journey and yeah… I love Kurt Russell, DRAW!

GORE
The flick eventually got VERY graphic! Slit throats, a beheading, scalping taken to the next level, a chopped off hand, a SUPERB kill that I won’t even describe, mangled leg, axe in the head and more! It got messy…
T & A
No time for love Dr. Jones!
BOTTOM LINE
BONE TOMAHAWK made for a thrilling Western and a sucker-punching horror film. The flick pimped out a stand out cast, superb characters, potent tension, organic humor, some visceral action bits and if there was an Award for Best Kill of the Year, BONE TOMAHAWK would win it hands down! And of course, seeing Kurth Russell play yet another hard ass lawman with a strong code of honor was a freaking treat for this film buff! Granted it was maybe 15 minutes too long, lacked in close-ups at times and not enough happened during the first hour, but when all was said, done and shot to smithereens I had a great time with this one! All that freaking matters. Be patient with BONE TOMAHAWK and you will be rewarded! It has Cult Classic written all over it!
BULL'S EYE
They say that Sean Young is in the film, but I didn't see her. I think her role got cut out. If I'm wrong, correct me!

The flick had a two week shoot at the Paramount Ranch. Short shoot!
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+0
7:16PM on 01/10/2016

Sean Young

Sean Young plays the Mayor's wife. Just one scene around the 35 minute mark.
Sean Young plays the Mayor's wife. Just one scene around the 35 minute mark.
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3:16PM on 10/24/2015

Bone Tomahawk was...

simply awesome! Yes, it could have been shorter, but was still entranced throughout. Screw Green Inferno, the gore in this was way gnarlier! Kurt Russell was in top form as was Patrick Wilson, Richard Jenkins, and even Captain Spalding himself for the few minutes he was in it. (Oh, and David Arquette) I don't tend to like Westerns, but besides Tombstone (which is AMAZING) this one is right up there in bad-assery.
simply awesome! Yes, it could have been shorter, but was still entranced throughout. Screw Green Inferno, the gore in this was way gnarlier! Kurt Russell was in top form as was Patrick Wilson, Richard Jenkins, and even Captain Spalding himself for the few minutes he was in it. (Oh, and David Arquette) I don't tend to like Westerns, but besides Tombstone (which is AMAZING) this one is right up there in bad-assery.
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1:34PM on 10/07/2015

Trailer

The trailer is now up at Fandango. lets get that bad boy posted here please.
The trailer is now up at Fandango. lets get that bad boy posted here please.
Your Reply:



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