|FORSAKEN (director: Jon Cassar; screenwriter: Brad Mirman; cinematographer: Rene Ohashi; editor: Susan Shipton; music: Jonathan Goldsmith ; cast: Kiefer Sutherland (John Henry Clayton), Donald Sutherland (Rev. William Clayton), Demi Moore (Mary-Alice Watson), Brian Cox (James McCurdy), Michael Wincott (Dave Turner), Aaron Poole (Frank Tillman), Dylan Smith (Little Ned), Christopher Rosamond (Petterson), Greg Ellis (Tom Watson), Michael Therriault (Doc Miller); Runtime: 90; MPAA Rating: R; producers: Kevin DeWalt, Josh Miller, Bill Marks, Gary Howsam, Isabella Marchese Ragona; Momentum Films (Minds Eye Entertainment); 2015-Canada)|
|"It should please those who like
their westerns the old-fashioned way."
by Dennis Schwartz
director Jon Cassar ("Assault on
Devil's Island") adequately helms this
old-fashioned western, except for the foul language by
the villain. It features for the first-time onscreen
the pairing of father-and-son, Donald Sutherland and
his son Kiefer. Brad Mirman wrote the routine,
plodding, script. It should please those who like
their westerns the old-fashioned way.
gunslinger John Henry Clayton (Kiefer
Sutherland) returns to his lawless small Wyoming
hometown of Fowler in 1872 and reunites with his
estranged widowed reverend father. After the
Civil War, the discharged soldier John Henry earns a
rep as a gunfighter, something his God-fearing dad
disapproves of. The kid vows to hang up his
guns, and helps dad run their farm by farming alone
the barren land his late mom wanted her husband and
son to farm together. John Henry discovers his old
flame, Mary Alice (Demi Moore), married for the
last eight years and with a son.
town's ruthless local businessman, James
McCurdy (Brian Cox), is ambitious to become a land
baron with the news that the railroad is coming to
the region. McCurdy forces the local farmers off the
land with his hired thugs. The smooth-talking
leader of the gang is Gentleman Dave Turner
(Michael Wincott), who convinces the farmers to
leave or be killed. One of the thugs is the volatile Frank
Tillman (Aaron Poole), who prefers to shoot
first before talking. When the farmer Petterson (Christopher
Rosamond) is killed by the thugs and
the passive John Henry is abused by them, it
predictably leads to the final shootout between the
bad guys and the good guy.
filled with cliches and Western stereotypes,
it's well-produced, well-acted, fast moving and
entertaining. But I must say, it would have benefited
more by taking a few risks and not being so derivative
and devoid of any nuances.
REVIEWED ON 3/4/2016 GRADE: B-
Dennis Schwartz: "Ozus' World Movie Reviews"
© ALL RIGHTS RESERVED DENNIS SCHWARTZ