Rent Hostiles (2017)

3.4 of 5 from 812 ratings
2h 8min
Rent Hostiles Online DVD & Blu-ray Rental
  • General info
  • Available formats
Synopsis:
1892, New Mexico - legendary Army captain Joseph J. Blocker (Christian Bale) undertakes one final mission before retirement: escort Yellow Hawk (Wes Studi) - a dying Cheyenne war chief - and his family back to sacred tribal lands. After 20 years of violent struggle, this gesture of peace is as unthinkable as it is harrowing. Together they battle against a punishing landscape and the brutality of men alike, coming to the rescue of a young widow (Rosamund Pike) amidst the carnage of her murdered family. Two great warriors, once rivals across the battlefield, must learn to trust each other and find peace in an unforgiving land.
A heroic odyssey of survival, 'Hostiles' becomes a story not about the miles travelled nor the battles fought, but the journey towards respect, reconciliation and forgiveness.
Actors:
, , , , , Gray Wolf Herrera, , , , , , , , , , , , Xavier Horsechief, ,
Directors:
Producers:
Scott Cooper, Ken Kao, John Lesher
Writers:
Scott Cooper, Donald E. Stewart
Studio:
Entertainment In Video
Genres:
Action & Adventure, Top 100 Films, Drama
BBFC:
Release Date:
30/04/2018
Run Time:
128 minutes
Languages:
English
Subtitles:
English Hard of Hearing
DVD Regions:
Region 2
Formats:
Pal
Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen 2.39:1
Colour:
Colour
Bonus:
  • Trailer
BBFC:
Release Date:
30/04/2018
Run Time:
133 minutes
Languages:
English
Subtitles:
English Hard of Hearing
Formats:
Pal
Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen 2.39:1
Colour:
Colour
BLU-RAY Regions:
B
Bonus:
  • A Journey of the Soul: The Making of Hostiles
  • Part 1 - Provenance
  • Part 2 - Removing the Binds
  • Part 3 - Don't Look Back
  • Trailer

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Reviews (22) of Hostiles

A very slow film... but that's not a bad thing - Hostiles review by PR

Spoiler Alert
18/06/2018

I am often critical of some modern films that seem so slow and languishing, sometimes leaving me thinking I have wasted a couple of viewing hours. It seems to be a trait observed regularly these days. The Hostiles is a long film, and it's pace, or should I say 'style' could certainly be described as ‘slow’ — but it certainly grips you right from the start and then it doesn't let up. I said to my wife after we sat through nearly three hours of The Hostiles something I have seldom said... I told her that the film was really rather slow... but it was also BRILLIANT for all that! We both agreed that we had just watched a most absorbing, chilling & sometimes quite brutal movie. We also agreed that it was probably one of the best movies we have watched in the past year or so.

It seems that every moment is lingered on (apart from sudden brutal scenes), but the acting, sparse script, character development and overall attention to detail is stunning — so the pace works perfectly well. Visually the movie is frankly amazing, and there's a real sense of authenticity in the sets and costumes etc. Indeed, it's worth watching the Special Features found on the Blu-ray version, as you then get a sense of the extremely meticulous production and directing techniques, and also the passion that every actor or behind-the-camera person put into the drama.

Christian Bale gives a wonderful, sombre performance as a man who has his demons, but is very much a product of the times in which he lived. He has led a life that is hard, brutal and difficult but he has qualities that make him a special person in such a lawless and cruel period of American history. Rosamund Pike is a seriously talented actor and she grips you from the very start and right up to the last dramatic moments of the story. I pick out Christian Bale and Rosamund Pike, but actually every single performance in the movie is breath-takingly good. I have to take my hat off to the fantastic cast and the truly awesome production team behind them.

This film was recommended to me by a friend and without that I think I could have easily missed it — but I would have been missing out on a very special three hours of viewing.

I also want to mention the photography and the music. The wide-shot scenes of New Mexico and Colorado (the main locations used for filming) are simply beautiful. Visually you really are taken to the Wild West with unflinching detail and cinematographic skills. I believe that the musical score for a movie too often gets 'overlooked' in reviews etc. I have always considered that a well crafted music soundtrack can add as much 'punch' and 'emotion' to a movie, as often the acting and screenplay do. It can be that important an ingredient. In The Hostiles I was a little disappointed that the ‘Extra Features’, whilst mentioning the location efforts, authentic costumes, acting prowess and production talent, did not really mention the music! Throughout the whole of the film the music is simply sublime. It's powerful and emotional, and provides a fantastic backdrop to the visuals. I have already mentioned that the movie is meticulous and played-out creatively at a 'slow pace' and therefore I feel the music is even more important in 'carrying' the long scenes, which are often performed with little dialogue, and then the superbly composed music makes the whole thing so damn powerful.

So, summing up: Acting is brilliant and detailed, Production and Direction is masterful, the photography and set/costumes have such authenticity... and the music gels the whole piece of work together to form a very solid piece of modern film artistry. It also makes you seriously think about America's history, back in those difficult pioneer days, when the treatment of the indigenous native peoples minorities, the hard lives and devastating brutality was complex, cruel and devastating. So, even from a 'social documenting' angle The Hostiles should not be ignored.

A beautifully crafted movie.

6 out of 6 members found this review helpful.

A Revisionist Western - Hostiles review by JR

Spoiler Alert
11/05/2018

The film is bleak and harrowing and very violent - the only light relief is the extraordinarily beautiful cinematography. At the beginning we are told that Blocker 'has taken more scalps than Sitting Bull himself'. The journey is also Blocker's inner journey to a kind of remorse for his life of killing and perhaps redemption. Unfortunately, the Native American characters are reduced to either murderous savages (the bad ones) or wise sages (the good ones). There are problems with the Rosamund Pike character who is mentally unhinged by the killing of her entire family, but recovers unfeasibly quickly. When she has a chance to return to safety and civilization, she unaccountably rejects it and continues on the trek. The film maker seems to love the violence he decries, and thus undermines the message of the the film.

5 out of 5 members found this review helpful.

Well worth a watch - Hostiles review by JG

Spoiler Alert
06/05/2018

Moody and earthy film that depicts the butchery and atrocities of the American West as seen through the eyes of soldier, settler and a native Indian.

Christian Bale gives a tremendous performance as the captain in charge of transporting an ailing Indian chief back to his homeland to die. The film questions brutality on both sides and shows that differences are resolvable but take time and deep understanding. Rosamund Pike plays a settler who’s family is wiped out by comanchees and is the centre of this controversy raised in the film.

Really good use of Indian dialogue. Really good acting. Well worth a watch.

4 out of 4 members found this review helpful.

Critic review

Hostiles review by Mark McPherson - Cinema Paradiso

Scott Cooper’s Hostiles takes a more contemplative and deeper path down its familiar trail of old west tales. It could’ve been another standard action picture given the grim opening of Comanches brutally slaughtering an entire family with one left alive. A lesser picture would’ve turned the movie into a revenge piece, where this incident is used as an excuse for the surviving mother or some hired gun to go on a bloody revenge run of bloodily slaughtering Native Americans. But the world isn’t that simple and Hostiles thankfully let its story mosey at an easy rate to better understand the nature of violence in a time when it was so very common.

The mother who has lost her family Rosalee Quaid (Rosamund Pike). Her first thoughts after the slaughter that took away her husband and three daughters are not of revenge but a painful psychosis for the world that doesn’t seem to make sense. She is discovered later at her burnt down home by Captain Joseph J. Blocker (Christian Bale), also struggling to understand the lines that seem to blur. He’s been down the bloodier road, having been a veteran of the Indian Wars where he slaughtered many. His last mission before retirement is given by the Colonel as that of an escort for Cheyenne war chief Yellow Haw. Blocker is reluctant as the last thing he wants to do is serve on the side of the Indians he killed, but maybe this understanding will clear some of the blood from his past and make him see a little something more on his final orders.

With wise and selective words, Hostiles carefully weaves the tapestry of its characters shifting among the cruel Western plains. Pike’s performance is the most powerful for how much fear and depression she embodies. It takes her more than a few hours of silent reflection to get over the death of her family, refusing to accept her baby is dead until she painfully digs a grave with her bare hands as tears stream. Her fears are also going to take a while to get over with how she views Indians, initially sent into a nightmarish shock when she spots the first few she meets after the attacks. These are bitter wounds and it’s interesting to watch how they take a hefty amount of time to heal. Bale’s performance is an understated and understanding one, looking on with gentle listening for having seen that same look of nihilism etched on the face of Rosalee. He could probably spin a few tales of the horrors he saw on the battlefield and yet he doesn’t. His face tells all and a veteran this weary probably wouldn’t delight in sharing such grizzly events.

The journey is met with dangers that never feel overblown as theatrics. They run into Comanches that ambush them but it’s a fight more gritty than thrilling. The climactic showdown is a shootout but not the kind where two men race to their pistols, favoring one where whoever can edge the closest over their cover gets the best shot. The Native Americans are not merely pitched as spiritual ciphers built to impart wisdom on the broken white man but exist as humans just as worn from the war as Blocker. For these surprisingly subtle and true personalities, the film has been praised by the National Congress of American Indians for authentic use of representation and language of the culture.

Cooper’s film is one that could be argued with how effective it is in the characters with their hunt for humanity amid genocide that doesn’t seem to be a heavier focus, but it’s hard to deny the film’s beauty in the setting and performances. If anything, it’s pleasing to have a film with enough patience to let the silence sink in of the weight from the war. Sometimes it comes through almost as well as the somber beauty of the mountains and fields for people who believe they’re in their twilight years.

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