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Damsel (2018)

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It's the Wild West, circa 1870. Samuel Alabaster, an affluent pioneer, ventures across the American frontier to marry the love of his life, Penelope. As his group traverses the west, the once-simple journey grows treacherous, blurring the lines between hero, villain and damsel.
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3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Robert Pattinson ... Samuel Alabaster
Mia Wasikowska ... Penelope
David Zellner ... Parson Henry
Nathan Zellner ... Rufus Cornell
Joseph Billingiere Joseph Billingiere ... Zachariah Running Bear
Morgan Lund Morgan Lund ... Bar Creep
Ray Kelleher Ray Kelleher ... Barkeep
David Wingo ... Barrel of Laughs
Russell Mael ... Prairie Crooner
Gary Brookins Gary Brookins ... Sheriff
Gabe Casdorph ... Anton Cornell
Landon Weeks Landon Weeks ... Piano Player
Larry Zeng Larry Zeng ... Scalped Traveler
Sabrina Chappuis Sabrina Chappuis ... Angry Traveler
Palmer Scott Palmer Scott ... Barber
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Storyline

As Samuel Alabaster (Robert Pattinson) travels across the American Frontier, on a journey to marry the love he has always looked for, Penelope (Mia Wasikowski), life becomes more and more dangerous. Accompanied by his miniature horse, Butterscotch, and drunkard companion, Parson Henry (David Zellner), the lines between hero, villain and damsel in distress become more and more blurred in this comic reinvention of the classic western movie. Written by DeAlan Wilson www.ComedyE.com

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Western

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some violence, language, sexual material, and brief graphic nudity | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

22 June 2018 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Damulka See more »

Filming Locations:

Utah, USA See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$20,291, 24 June 2018, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$305,136, 23 August 2018
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Color:

Color
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Robert Pattinson first read the script, but passed it on because he thought a movie like this would never get financed because he couldn't really categorize it. A few weeks later, he randomly watched the directors previous film Kumiko, the Treasure Hunter (2014) at the cinema and loved it. Wanting to know who the directors were, he asked his agent about them and found out that he read the script for Damsel a few weeks earlier. See more »


Soundtracks

Alouette
Arranged & Performed by Nathan Zellner
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User Reviews

 
Hack millennial subversion attempt
1 July 2018 | by damselsucks1See all my reviews

What a piece of crap. I've seen movies that were worse, but few that I deeply wanted to leave early more or that pissed me off as much. It has *some* merit (beautifully shot, a couple amusing moments). But ultimately: millennial garbage par excellence. These two brothers wrote and directed it, and they clearly think they are the Coen brothers with a hint of Wes Anderson for whimsy. What's more, they stole their take on male hope-projection onto a beautiful women from a much better film: There's Something About Mary.

In attempting to subvert masculine cowboy tropes, they made a hack film of a different sort: one that is accepted because it panders to popular opinion among people who go to the renovated art house movie theater in the part of town they gentrified with their trust fund bucks. It isn't that the opinion is wrong or uninteresting in and of itself, it's just relayed in this film in such a hack, lazy, glib, boring way by people certain they're more clever than they are.

It would have taken an amazing female lead to overcome the middle-school quality writing and all-too woke directing; their naturalistic take on zany Wes Anderson-movie dialogue was excruciating in certain scenes and I could have easily believed a teenager wrote it. But what was committed to film was one of the worst performances I've ever seen by an actor. To believe this woman was capable of starring in this or any picture is a strong indication you're as irrationally obsessed with her as the film's characters.

The result of all of this is a movie only certain people could enjoy: privileged white young women who can't get enough of having their shallow politics pandered to and the men who subconsciously know they must share the same opinions if they want a social life, so they self-righteously and vociferously do: in other words, woke drama queens who will their victimhood while boasting their empowerment and their male allies (tm)/hangers on.

Great movies don't pander. They make people find unlikely surrogates. True subversion requires excellence and subtlety this film doesn't come close to touching as it bashes its hack message into the faces of too many grateful to be bludgeoned with their own ideas. It doesn't even require pretentious art house claptrap to attempt to subvert. Blockbusters like The Hunger Games--a film where the damsel is literally a cute, cake-baking boy who is saved by the ass-kicking heroine--do much more to change expectations and advance gender relations. That's in no small part because that movie is well crafted. It's a good movie to a broad audience (no pun intended). Damsel preaches sloppily to its own choir of loathsome millennial hipsters. I'd be just as pissed off watching a Kurt Cameron loves Jesus movie that pandered to evangelicals, and I'd be pissed for for the same exact reason. However, what's really troubling is the thought that this is the future of media post #MeToo. Indeed, that's scarier than Hereditary.


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