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Outlaws and Angels

Canadian Premiere
  • USA
  • 2016
  • 120 mins
  • DCP
  • English
Official Selection: Sundance 2016

“A Grand Guignol nod to spaghetti Westerns… likely to win some cult admiration” – Dennis Harvey, VARIETY

Outlaws and Angels from Festival Fantasia on Vimeo.

Two young women are walking quietly through town when a stray bullet suddenly finds its way to the middle of one of their foreheads, five robbers bursting out of the nearby bank before the poor girl’s body even hits the floor. Trying to escape amidst a heavy shootout, one of them loses his life while another gets critically injured, keeping up with the gang while in constant agony. Stalked by a bounty hunter named Josiah (Luke Wilson), the surviving perpetrators move deeper into the desert. Just when hope is drying up as their thirst and hunger become overwhelming, nightfall brings them to the Tildon farm, on which they find something far removed from your typical family.

For his debut feature, JT Mollner pays tribute to the Westerns of the ’60s and ’70s, most notably the legendary works of Sergio Leone, Sam Pekinpah and Clint Eastwood that have impacted so many of us. He even goes so far as filming it on 35mm like back in the day, a perfectly fitting process for this gloomy and violent concoction emphasizing the gritty, depraved and brutal side of the American West. Creating more than a mere pastiche, Mollner delivers something different, something modern. He quickly dismisses deserts and plains for a hard, close-knit setting that is both visually and psychologically cruel. Masterfully written, the script offers his characters enough room to fully evolve. Cast-wise, Francesca Eastwood, daughter of the legendary silver-screen cowboy, delivers a twisted yet solid performance that is sure to make her famous father proud. OUTLAWS AND ANGELS is not only an homage to a genre that is rarely visited these days, but also a refreshingly bold and extremely violent piece of work.

— Éric S. Boisvert