Schlocktoberfest 2K15 Day 25: Bone Tomahawk (2015)

A good western has a lot of gunfights. A great western has deadly looking facial hair.
A good western has a lot of gunfights. A great western has deadly looking facial hair.

Synopsis: Four men set out in the Wild West to rescue a group of captives from cannibalistic cave dwellers.

Kurt Russell two words in the English language that instill an aura of badass-ness whenever they’re brought up in conversation. Escape From New York, The Thing, Big Trouble In Little China, Tango & Cash, Captain Ron, Backdraft, Tombstone with a filmography the likes of that the man has surpassed being a living legend. Whenever you throw one of his movies on you’re guaranteed one hell of an entertaining ride plus don’t be shocked if a majority of his sarcastic wit eventually rubs off on you. Although older and wiser Kurt still puts everything into the performances that come his way and these days it seems he likes to pursue passion projects although he did surprise everyone with an appearance in the latest Fast & Furious movie. With the end of 2015 almost at hand Russell’s star is going to shine brightly once more as he tries to reinvigorate the Western genre with a prominent role in Quentin Tarantino’s The Hateful Eight. His adventures in the wild frontier don’t stop there as this past Friday a little indie flick by the name of Bone Tomahawk premiered via Video On Demand and all streaming marketplaces like Amazon Video and iTunes. Living in a time where there was no indoor plumbing or modern medicine is a factor horrifying enough to include Bone Tomahawk on this year’s Schlocktoberfest. Honestly I’d find a tribe of isolated cave dwelling cannibalistic Indians about as threatening as a swarm of monarch butterflies compared to barely having any means to battle the common cold or pneumonia. Go ahead fire off some bullets or arrows they won’t do you any good when a nasty little germ enters your immune system and feeds off your suffering.

Searching for a something that runs the gamut in terms of great and underrated talent? Look no further Kurt Russell, Patrick Wilson, Matthew Fox, Richard Jenkins, David Arquette, Sid Haig, James Tolkan, Sean Young, and Michael Pare. Some faces were easier to spot than others as several of these names have a blink and you’ll miss it cameo. For me recognizing Michael Pare took a couple minutes it wasn’t until I heard his unmistakable voice where I had to hop on over to Internet Movie Database to make sure it was him. Bone Tomahawk is a rustic down and dirty style western. The amount of dust and sand thrown around is enough to make you unwittingly clean yourself off after you’re done viewing it. The first half is all about development giving viewers a detailed look at who these people are and thanks to everyone involved they make you care about their individual stories/backgrounds. To think that this is Kurt Russell’s first western in over 20 years is hard to believe than again he hasn’t really done anything horror related since 1982 so at least he dove into this role by growing out the epic facial hair again. The wild west isn’t that good of a home for a large beard but worry not Kurt aficionados he instead grew a marvelous handlebar mustache that should have received a billing entirely of its own. The story begins to drag at around the 1 hour and 20 minute mark and its not until everything flips into horror and gore mode when maximum adrenaline overload is finally reached. Weak stomachs will not be able to win out here and this is where I feel Bone Tomahawk is going to lose a lot of people’s interest. A successful horror/western hybrid is much like trying to come up with the next peanut butter and jelly or peanut butter and chocolate combination it’s going to take hours upon hours of trial and error until someone is able to balance out a tastefully addicting experience.

Final Grade: C+

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