When you exit the theater after viewing the movie Hostiles you are not going to have a warm and fuzzy feeling. The movie is based on a manuscript written by a captain in the Union Army in the 1890’s.
Hostiles wastes no time engrossing you into the nature of the film which is centered around violence and beauty. The story is of a captain who against his wishes has to escort a Cheyenne Chief from New Mexico to Montana. You learn throughout the movie that the captain, played by Christian Bale, has been fighting Native Americans most of his life and both the Chief and Bale clearly despise each other. As the movie plays out you realize that every counter party the group encounters has the potential to be hostile enemies. Whether it is another group of Native Americans, fur trappers, or white men you understand that everyone is a threat.
The movie feels more of a documentary because you truly feel that this is what life was like for these men and families in the late 1800’s. Life was brutal and yet beautiful and the movie displays this perfectly. While being slow at times while the group travels you are completely in awe of the beauty of the land they travel. I have learned to appreciate cinematography within movies and Hostiles is absolutely stunning. The acting is superb between Bale, Rosamund Pike, and Wes Studi. The actors give off the emotion that feels real especially when being challenged with the loss of people in the group.
Before seeing this film I encourage you to appreciate the visuals of the land, expect a slow pace at times and be ready to see extreme violence. I had an extra appreciation for when the group reaches Montana and sheds tears of joy at just its beauty. The last scene also happens to take place in my own hometown of Butte, Montana which was a pleasant surprise. Again dont expect to have warm butterflies leaving the theater but I promise you will enjoy this movie for all it is worth. I give Hostiles 6.8 out of 10 popcorn buckets.
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