In the late 1800s, a fanatical religious leader, a renegade Sheriff, and a former prostitute collide in a blood triangle on the rugged plains of the New Mexico Territory.
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★★★★ review by Cogerson on Letterboxd
Sweetwater is a pleasant surprise. When I put this movie in....I did not have any expectations. Turns out it is one of the best westerns that I have seen in awhile. Ed Harris plays a lawman looking for two missing men who are related to the Governor. Harris stumbles into Jason Isaac's domain....which he rules with an iron hand. January Jones plays a former hooker turned farmer. How the three parties interact is pretty interesting.
Harris is very memorable as he seems to play one of the first CSI in the Old West. Isaacs has his best bad guy role since The Patriot (he never seemed that bad in the Harry Potter movies)...and Jones is outstanding as she is both sexy and impressive with guns. I would recommend checking out this movie.
★★★½ review by Chedly Ouni on Letterboxd
Ed Harris, in a very entertaining turn, plays Sheriff Jackson, an eccentric sleuth going about his work in the wild west like he's Horacio Kane from CSI: Miami. he stumbles upon a fanatical religious leader played to near perfection by the underrated Jason Isaacs. January Jones plays an ex-prostitute now married to a farmer who gets murdered by the cult leader and now she's after revenge. all these stories interwine resulting in this surprisingly fun little western.
Sadly there's a big drop in the overall quality of Sweetwater in the last 20 minutes, mainly because January Jones' character becomes more central in the story and she doesn't really have the acting chops to carry the wait of this movie which is really unfortunate because almost everything else about Sweetwater works very well, from script to cinematography and direction.
★★★★ review by FredM on Letterboxd
Well I'll be damned, I just got kicked off my horse.
Ain't this a pleasant western surprise. Call it what you will, Tarantino-lite bla bla, but this is good. Like in the Far West, let me challenge you: name me a bad scene. Find one?
Shoot, I win.
It works. I felt bad for January's guy. She's mad, and gets her revenge. Oh, and she gets naked. But it's functional, she kills 2 men by luring them. Who's complaining?
Also present: some nice shots: the crosses alongside the road, the approaching shot of the guy making a fence, the upside downs.
Even more present: Ed Harris. Make him sheriff, give him a star, give him a statue. His scene at the preacher's dinner table is magnificent. His jacket, his behaviour, again, closest to Tarantino that you will get or you end up his lap.
Let me recommend this. Forget Metacritic.
Grab your gun and saddle your couch.
★★★★ review by Michael Gannaway / Hucksta G on Letterboxd
Highly watchable revisionist western with three fun performances from Isaacs, Harris and Jones.
★★★½ review by Jayson Quearry on Letterboxd
Clearly a film lacking a coherent structure, Sweetwater still manages enough style and eccentricity to please. While promotional materials make January Jones out to be the protagonist, Ed Harris and Jason Isaacs' tandem performances devour the runtime. In a film about ownership, the narrative unquestionably belongs to them. Jones is then left with a one-dimensional revenge arc coupled with a late addition backstory about leaving behind a life of prostitution, neither satisfactorily providing much to play. Once she begins mowing down offenders, the film's focus becomes even less clear. One reading might suggest a symbolic struggle between legal and god-given rights, both given significance by corrupt systems, but each proven self-destructive in the wake of personal justice.
The second feature from the Miller twins, Sweetwater suggests a stylistic promise, anchored in the film's stunning cinematographic usage of light, composition, and fluid movement, if not a talent for plotting.
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