Saturday, August 27, 2011
The wild west was full of ghost stories- often told around the camp fire in hushed tones lest the spirits in the shadows overhear you and bring their presence into your bedroll under the full moon. Unfortunately, when it comes to movies, the wild west and horror don't seem to do as well as their oral storytelling predecessors. Having said that, it's always interesting to see how a director works to mesh the two.
A group of settlers have sold a deed to a mountain- which is supposed to be hiding a wealth of good under its rocky surface. From the very beginning, greed and suspicion threatens to tear the group apart. After the murder of a native, the group soon discovers that they are threatened by more than just greed...
While this film certainly isn't a great film, there are some things I enjoyed. It was a nice touch having Jack Elam do a cameo as Grady- the man who guides the group to the mountain. I remember watching him in all sorts of westerns growing up- "Support Your Local Gunfighter," and "Support Your Local Sheriff". Christopher Boyer- as Jackson, also was a pleasure to see. Boyer brought a nice sense of cynicism to his role as a man who after having been part of the infamous Donner Party, lost his Faith in God and man. Of the cast, Boyer was the best of the lot. Ted Haler as The Priest wasn't bad, but didn't really do or say much.
In fact, most of the characters, beyond Jackson, are pretty much just mere sketches of people, lacking the sort of depth that makes you care about them. As much as I didn't necessarily like Jackson, I did relate to him more than the others. Their deaths didn't have the impact it should've.
The camera work wasn't bad, though it wasn't great either. There are some really decent shots and angles though.
The story was kinda weak, but had potential for more if the characters had been fleshed out a bit more. It moves slowly, and I found my mind wandering at times- which isn't good.
When I finished watching this movie, I was torn. I enjoyed it because of Boyer's performance, but the rest of the film was pretty lackluster. I want to give it a spot in "The Bad"... but I'm going to have to invite "Uninvited" to sit in "The Ugly"...