Directed by David and Nathan Zellner
A man heads west, ready to play the hero.
The new Robert Pattinson movie only looks like a classic Western, said Owen Gleiberman in Variety. In reality, it’s a deadpan twist on the genre that’s “droll and touching and amusing and a little boring all at the same time.” The co-directors, brothers David and Nathan Zellner, at least “know just how to use their star cast.” Pattinson, playing a would-be hero who’s determined to save and marry a girl who’s been kidnapped, “hits the perfect note of drawling, flaked-out good cheer.” Meanwhile, Mia Wasikowska gives the damsel in distress true grit; “her straight-shooter line readings are punch lines of rationality.” If only the laughs and plot twists weren’t doled out so parsimoniously, said Brian Tallerico in RogerEbert.com. “Imagine the slow pace of a Western, but bursting into comedy sequences instead of gunfire (although there’s some of that as well).” Still, with the help of a great, spooky soundtrack, the Zellner brothers “find a mood all their own,” said David Edelstein in New York magazine. In their American West, delusions run rampant among the menfolk, and “comic ineptitude is born of loneliness and desperation.” ■