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Seraphim Falls [Blu-ray]
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Western starring Liam Neeson and Pierce Brosnan. The American Civil War has ended but Colonel Morsman Carver (Neeson) is on one final mission: to kill Gideon (Brosnan) no matter what it takes. Launched by a gunshot and propelled by rage, the relentless pursuit takes them both far from the comforts and codes of civilisation, into the bloodiest recesses of their own souls.
Out of nowhere, the Western seems to be enjoying its latest mini-resurgence. And while Seraphim Falls isnt quite as high profile as the recent 3:10 To Yuma, its still a solidly made piece of cinema thats well worth spending some time with.
It centres around the search for a man named Gideon, played by Pierce Brosnan, and the reasons for said search arent clear at the start of the film. But what is certain is that a small party is on his trail, led by Liam Neesons Morsman Carver, and that Carver is very determined to get his man. From this set up, Seraphim Falls slowly unfolds as an intelligent, ambiguous mish-mash of Western and thriller, and an intriguing one at that.
Seraphim Falls, it should be said, isnt a ride without a few problems. The pacing isnt consistent, for instance, and the back end of the film doesnt make the most of the build up before it. But theres still plenty in its corner. Its two star actors are in excellent form, with both Brosnan and Neeson revelling in the complexity of their respective characters, while some sequences are genuinely exciting too.
If Serphami Falls, though, fails to quite deliver what it hints its capable of, then it still leaves enough in place to enjoy. Refusing to dumb down its approach, its a grown-up, interesting movie, and one thats easily possible to warm to in spite of the aforementioned problems. Roll on more Westerns, say we --Jon Foster --This text refers to the DVD edition.
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Top Customer Reviews
This movie starts off with one of the most gritty and riveting hunts in recent memory. Pierce Brosnan's weatherbeaten and hardened ex Union officer is the hunted one, and Liam Neeson is the hunter, driven remorselessly by the ghosts of his past. The cold of the mountains, the pain of using a knife to gouge out a bullet and cauterize the wound, the chill of the water, the close quarters kills with the knife, all make for a visceral start with minimal dialogue and little explanation. Each man is completely single minded - one on survival, and one on revenge. As the chase moves onto the plains, we discover more about their past and the reason for the chase, marking a change in tone of the movie. As the plains give way to the desert, the movie takes an altogether more mythical and almost surreal mood, which is sure to divide audiences. Those expecting an action packed climax to the chase may feel cheated, however what we do get is at the very least thought provoking and I think lingers in the memory much more than a conventional showdown would have.
The director borrows heavily from the greats - the revenge themes of many a spaghetti Western, with the repeated flashbacks revealing a little more each time we see them reminiscent of Leone, also Ford's `The Searchers', as well as the atmosphere of Eastwood's Westerns. Borrowed the styles may be, but they are put together with a unique voice and vision, albeit in a somewhat hollow way in which the director too often substitutes myth and images for true drama. But what startling images they are!Read more ›
In my opinion, the main thing this film has going for it is atmosphere. The scenery is gorgeous and varies greatly throughout the whole picture. The acting from Brosnan and Neeson is top notch (Brosnan being particularly good).
As you've probably read elsewhere, the film has a ... 'different' sort of ending with supernatural/spiritual overtones. A lot of people seem to have had a problem with this but it didn't feel at all out of place to me.
But still, this does seem to be a film you love or hate. I loved it; I leant my copy to a friend who fell asleep half way through.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I would call this movie a metaphysical thriller in a Western setting (I use "metaphysical" loosely! Read morePublished 4 months ago by Stanley Crowe
A good film, throws you straight into the action. It could do with a little more explanation as to why Neeson is chasing Brosnan but a good film all the same.Published 6 months ago by Crime Buff