| There's a relationship here to Peckinpah's Pat Garret and Billy The Kid, the chase movie famously about a man who wants to be caught chased by one who doesn't want to catch him. There's also an obvious relationship to the films of Terrence Malick; to Badlands, which tracked the instant mythology of killer Charles Starkweather; and to Days of Heaven, from which Andrew Dominick and skilled cinematographer Roger Deakins draw evident visual inspiration. But this is no Malick clone. Dominick is more fascinated with men's interactions with one another than with their environment. |
Nevertheless, Dominick's camera lovingly roves over the Canadian plains with a patient grace rarely seen outside Malick. But he's more subjective, and we're led to believe that long glances at a field or sky are looking into James and Ford, rather than at the landscape in spite of them. And when the violence hits, Dominick lends it a thudding power, but strips away the romanticism of the tales Robert Ford loved. The film isn't frequently violent, but it is brutally and frankly so. There's no gloss on a man being shot in the back, other than the air of foreshadowing and acceptance the first time it happens.