BLACKTHORN Add To My Top 10
A Guilty Conscience Lasts a Lifetime
Release Date: October 07, 2011
Audience: Older teenagers and adults
Runtime: 102 minutes
Distributor: Magnolia Pictures
Director: Mateo Gil
Executive Producer: Jan Pace
Writer: Miguel Barros
Address Comments To:Bill Banowski, CEO, Magnolia Pictures (Magnet Releasing)
1614 West 5th St.
Austin, TX 78703
Eamon Bowles, President, Magnolia Pictures (Magnet Releasing)
43 West 27th St., 7th Floor
New York, NY 10001
Phone: (212) 924-6701; Fax: (212) 924-6742
Website: www.magpictures.com; Email: info@ magpictures.com
The movie stars veteran actor and playwrights Sam Shepard in the role of a lifetime as former famed robber Butch Cassidy, posing under the alias James Blackthorn in 1920s Bolivia. Blackthorn learns that the woman he shared with the Sundance Kid has died, leaving the son to whom he’s been writing for years. This inspires him to leave his hideout to return to the United States and connect with the son. The movie shows his heartfelt letters to the son, which are filled with philosophies on living about the importance of friendship and not wasting time in life, and trying to make amends for past wrongs.
While traveling alone, he encounters Eduardo, a younger Latino outlaw who has just robbed a train after studying Butch Cassidy’s famed techniques. The two first meet after Eduardo shoots at Blackthorn, and Blackthorn shoots in return. During the shootout, Blackthorn kills Eduardo’s horse, forcing him to stay close to Blackthorn. Blackthorn learns Eduardo has stolen $50,000 from what he describes as his rich employers.
Blackthorn decides to keep riding with his new sidekick, Eduardo, because he thinks he’s found one last chance to score as a robber. The further they ride together, however, the more little details don’t add up. This leads to a stunning series of consequences and betrayals between the men.
As the story rolls forward, Blackthorn is seen having several flashbacks to the criminal glory days of his youth. These scenes work as a strong parallel with the modern day as he builds a new friendship for the first time in 20 years with the younger criminal. As the Mexican Army and a Pinkerton agent get closer, Blackthorn and Eduardo reveal their true characters in a series of intense doublecrosses.
BLACKTHORN features an award-worthy performance by Sam Shepard and a terrifically charismatic turn by Eduardo Noriega as the new sidekick with a dark secret. BLACKTHORN works wonders, not just because of the quality acting but also in mixing moments of solid action with mesmerizing, thoughtful moments of natural beauty in the outdoor settings and the thoughtful conversations between its leads.
This is a beautifully shot movie that frequently frames its vibrant imagery as if they were paintings. The music score also shows lots of artistic craft. Overall, BLACKTHORN is one of the year’s best-made movies and can be seen in select cities theatrically but is available through most cable TV systems via On Demand.
The title character, Butch Cassidy, eventually takes a moral stance. He shows regret for some of his past actions. There are also references to facing God’s judgment. However, BLACKTHORN contains plenty of strong foul language and intense scenes of violence, so extreme caution is advised.
BLACKTHORN features an award-worthy performance by Sam Shepard and a charismatic turn by Eduardo Noriega. It’s a beautifully shot western with an evocative score, solid action, and thoughtful dialogue. The title character eventually takes a moral stance. He shows regret for some of his past actions. There are also references to facing God’s judgment. However, BLACKTHORN contains plenty of strong foul language and intense scenes of violence, so extreme caution is advised.