Les Cowboys

Drama about a father and son who set out to find their missing daughter/sister with the help of an American headhunter.


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  • ★★★★ review by Jason Bailey on Letterboxd

    In its first hour or so, the unapologetic echoes of 'The Searchers' ring cloud and clear: Director Thomas Bidegain tells the story of Alain, tough, stoic French cowboy — there’s a subculture I wasn’t aware of — whose 16-year-old daughter runs away with her Muslim boyfriend, prompting a multi-year, multi-continent search to “rescue” a young woman who by all indications doesn’t want to return. The transition is fairly seamless (Ethan Edwards’ racism translates into Alain’s Islamophobia quite effortlessly), with her father and young brother hitting brick walls and dead ends all the way, ignoring all indications that “she’s not your daughter anymore.” But it’s his obsession, ruining his life and his relationships — and then Bidegain suddenly veers, tinkering with the homage before dispensing with it all together to become something quietly devastating, and (especially in its final scenes) staggeringly powerful. But even when it diverges from it source, the thematic link is clear: this is ultimately a story about responsibility, and the humanity that must compel it.

  • ★★★½ review by Chris Hormann on Letterboxd

    I've never seen The Searchers so I'm not entirely sure how closely this film follows the plotline of the John Ford classic. But in its own right, this is a Western although an unconventional one which follows a father and son who go searching for their sister who has disappeared with her Muslim boyfriend. There's a laudable attempt to pull a curtain back on Islamaphobia and the way the modern world still is coming to terms with having those who practise non-Western religions in our lives. There's subtlety in the way it is dealt with and although there needed to be more focus on some of the Muslim characters, it is relatively even-handed. Where this soars is the first half as a father comes to terms with the physical loss of his daughter and the second half can't quite live up to that, albeit there is some stunning cinematography across all of the locations. And there's John C.Reilly who appears out of the blue and then disappears almost as quickly, as if wandering in from another film set.

  • ★★★½ review by Luis_989 on Letterboxd

    This is a french western, I had never seen one before and it was neat.

  • ★★★½ review by Mathieu Li-Goyette on Letterboxd

    Un remake de The Searchers où les Amérindiens sont remplacés par des djihadistes. Le ton est juste, les interprétations retenues et le montage intelligent (tout le contraire de ce à quoi je m'attendais). Ce gars-là est à suivre de près, parce que faire un western français qui ne soit pas poseur ni complexé, en soit, c'est tout un exploit.

  • ★★★★ review by otxjunior on Letterboxd

    The way the cuts ommit many years of the characters' lives like if they were nothing was very effective. Also no sides were taken. Very pleased with that.

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