RATED R (some strong violence, language throughout and brief sexuality)
RUNNING TIME: 102 minutes
DIRECTOR: David Mackenzie
Jeff Bridges - Marcus Hamilton
Chris Pine - Toby Howard
Ben Foster - Tanner Howard
Gil Birmingham - Alberto Parker
Dale Dickey - Elsie
Katy Mixon - Jenny Ann
Divorced father Toby Howard and his ex-con brother Tanner rob branches of the bank about to foreclose on the family farm. Hot on their trail is aging Texas Ranger Marcus Hamilton, who is nearing retirement, and fellow ranger Alberto Parker.
ROG'S VIEWPOINT: 4 CAMS
Well-drawn characters, an immersive story and riveting chases make this modern-day western one of the year's best films. This isn't the typical good vs. evil tale, making it difficult to choose who to root for. The Texas Rangers are stalwart and determined while the bank-robbing brothers and their cause will evoke sympathy from much of the audience. Jeff Bridges, Chris Pine, Ben Foster and Gil Birmingham command the screen with award-worthy performances. Foster's Tanner is the least likable with extremely violent tendencies. Director David Mackenzie and writer Taylor Sheridan, who wrote "Sicario", capture the essence of the old west brilliantly. Their dialogue-rich allegorical tale targets today's economy and the desperation of humans trapped with no easy way out in a most entertaining way. Sure, you've seen this story up on the screen before - but never with such an inventive approach. The landscapes of New Mexico substitute for Texas in Giles Nuttgens' stark cinematography. The memorable songs and score by Nick Cave and Warren Ellis blend in seamlessly and advance the plot without being intrusive. For fans of classic oaters, this film is a must-see. "Hell or High Water" bristles with true grit.