In the 1860s, five men have been tracking a sixth across Nevada for more than two weeks. They shoot and wound him, but he gets away. They pursue, led by the dour Carver, who will pay them each $1 a day once he's captured. The hunted is Gideon, resourceful, skilled with a knife. Gideon's flight and Carver's hunt require horses, water, and bullets. The course takes them past lone settlers, a wagon train, a rail crew, settlements, and an Indian philosopher. What is the reason for the hunt; what connects Gideon and Carver? What happened at Seraphim Falls?Written by
The sunset, shown about forty-seven minutes into the film, when Gideon descends the mountain, was also featured in the final shot of The Astronaut Farmer (2006). See more »
At the start of the movie, when Gideon moves around to create false trails after falling in the river, his fire alternates between burning and out each time he passes it. When Carver and his men arrive, the fire is out. See more »
Well, we definitely got I'm. I wouldn't say gut shot, but got 'im pretty good.
He didn't even take his rifle. Horse run off though.
It's cleared up some. Why don't we get a move on.
Let him bleed...
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I think you're going to see some very mixed reviews for this film. The tragedy is that it's going to be picked up primarily by fans of westerns, who are looking for shootouts and plots that can be boiled down to "good guys" and "bad guys." Do not go into this movie expecting that.
This is ultimately a revenge story, but not a straightforward or clean-cut one; in this way I would compare it to "Memento" and "The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada".
It's not clear who we're "supposed" to sympathize with at the beginning. We want to sympathize with the revenge-seeker; but we're told almost nothing about why he wants revenge. As he displays at least as many brutal and mercenary traits as anyone else in the film, we question why we side with him, and realize that we're only inclined to do so because our previous experience with "revenge" stories has programmed us to do so.
But the quarry is far from a sympathetic character as well, and we're torn emotionally on what we want to see happen. That is, until the original tragedy is finally revealed. And I've honestly never seen such a well-conceived scene of this type... the tragedy is heart-rending.
I won't say much more except that as the film goes on, the degree to which it will appeal to fans of literal straightforward westerns decreases significantly. You see, as the film begins, Carver's pursuit of Gideon takes them through various isolated episodes: encounters with various characters. As the film goes on, these encounters become more and more obscurely surreal; the final such encounter seems almost supernatural or fantastic. The writer and director have peeled away the internal reality of the story, and are speaking to us through the form itself. Not something that your average Western viewer is likely to accept or appreciate.
Viewers will come to this film expecting a completely realist story; and that's what they seem to be getting at the beginning of the movie. The viewer is not prepared for this realism to slowly and obscurely fall apart - and while that may be the reason that the film creates such a powerful and somehow creepy experience by the end, the same factor is likely to leave most viewers feeling robbed.
Ultimately this film is definitely worth watching, but may not have enduring appeal to lovers of the traditional Western genre. A note while viewing: pay attention to the theme of loss, and how various possessions of the characters are lost.
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