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Red Rock West Reviews

Page 1 of 14
Pierluigi P

Super Reviewer

August 22, 2011
Entertaining pastiche of noir and western. Notoriously flawed by lack of verisimilitude. The always menacing presence of Dennis Hopper is a plus. A clear inspiration for Oliver Stone's U-Turn.
Aaron N

Super Reviewer

December 4, 2006
Lyle: Don't piss on the seat, even if they did. It's bad luck.

A neo-noir set in Wyoming that follows all the standards. Nic Cage is the unlucky hero, in over his head. Lara Flynn Boyle is the femme fatale. J.T. Walsh and Dennis Hopper are the ones up to no good. The film is made well enough and manages to be entertaining for the most part.

Cage stars as Michael, a man trying to find a job, but do to a dodgy knee that was injured during his time spent in the military, its quite hard for him. Michael stumbles into a bar only to be mistaken for a hitman by the bartender, played by J.T. Walsh, who hires him to kill his wife, played by Boyle. Michael accepts, only to plan on ditching with the half up front paid money. Things go awry as Michael can't seem to get out of town, only to have even more problems once the real hitman, played by Dennis Hopper, shows up.

This film is just fine. It plays with the genre by having it set in the midwest, but really doesn't offer much in the way of surprise. So that leaves the filmmaking and the actors involved. Cage does just fine, Hopper is always interesting to watch, and I do miss the standard type of character that Walsh used to play before he died.

Director John Dahl also manages to do a good enough job at throwing in some tension and action our way, which certainly keeps the film's pace moving.

A fine thriller.

Michael Williams: Adios, Red Rock.
Anthony L

Super Reviewer

September 25, 2009
An interesting and entertaining alternative Modern day western. Good performances from Hopper and the late, great J.T. Walsh.

Super Reviewer

March 8, 2007
Mistaken for a hired killer, drifter Nicolas Cage is offered $5,000 to murder a local bar owner's wife, who in turn offers him $10,000 to return the favour. Planning to just keep the money and skip town, he finds leaving Red Rock is a lot harder than he figured. This heavily Tarantino influenced noir-western hybrid has so many twists and turns, double crosses and double bluffs that by the end you're not sure you're coming or going. It's also a little dated as Lara Flynn Boyle must surely be the worst dressed femme fatale in cinema history. On the plus side, it looks good, has a nice soundtrack and is short and efficient enough to not outstay its welcome. Cage is doing his put-upon "this can't be happening to me!" persona rather than the usual bellowed sarcasm so he's quite bearable and J. T. Walsh and Dennis Hopper make a couple of colourful bad guys. Undemanding yet unpretentious, its very silly, but enjoyably so.
Dean !

Super Reviewer

August 25, 2008
A pretty decent thriller with a lot of well known faces. It's about a drifter making out to be a hitman, but things go from strange to worse when he finds out who the client is and and the real hitman shows up. Worth a look next time it comes on TV.

Super Reviewer

August 15, 2011
Red Rock West has all the depth of a fine crime novel, and John Dahl is a good storyteller, but the movie is bogged down by stiff acting and predictable dialogue. This is the kind of movie that is designed to please the critics and, unfortunately, Dahl has forgotten about the audience.
Alec B

Super Reviewer

April 26, 2013
The plot comes together in a fashion that's a bit too neat and tidy for my taste and Cage's performance is kinda dull, but its still a solid blend of the neo-noir and western genres. I also like that as the plot progresses things get worse for the central character each time he makes the "moral" decision.
William G

Super Reviewer

February 11, 2007
Modest noir has solid performances, pacing in its favor.
Stephen E

Super Reviewer

November 29, 2011
Red Rock West has all the depth of a fine crime novel, and John Dahl is a good storyteller, but the movie is bogged down by stiff acting and predictable dialogue.
Lee K

Super Reviewer

July 9, 2009
Like i said in previous reviews, recently i have been going through Nic Cage's IMDB list of projects he has done to see if there was anything i hadnt seen that he's been in. And low and behold i found a bunch of em. So far out of three watched i liked 2 of em . 2-1 not a bad ratio so far. Just goes to show to show Nic Cage although one of the busiest actors is also careful of the scripts he chooses to work on. Red Rock West is another gem of his that mustve slipped under my radar in 93. Great storyline however i found the ending a little on the cheesy side that being said it was a pretty good thriller. This time round Nic portrays Michael Williams a down and out Texan who resides in his car and tries to get jobs but fails to an injury he took while serving in the marines. Apon driving into a little town of red rock he enters the red rock tavern to see aboiut a job and in a serious judgmrent error ends up taking a job that belonged to a professional hitman (Dennis Hopper) needloess to say all hell breaks loose and the moral of the story is number one money is never easy and number who's life you try to impersonate as the grass is always greener on the other side of the fence. Good casting featuring the late great Jt Walsh who was always a pleasure to watch work and a very underated actor to say the least. Another great and recently passed Dennis Hopper portrays the hitman that was originally intended for the hit but was a little later then mike at arriving to the bar. Dennis hopper in my books was awesome in portraying villians. Lara Flynn Boyle rounds off the cast with a less then believable performance as the sheriffs wife who the hit is to be delivered upon. Nic Cage's charector in this spends the rest of the movie digging the hole he has made himself further and further. To get out is the question.
Ivan D

Super Reviewer

February 21, 2010
It has the Coen brothers' main elements written all over it: Money, betrayal, violence, and plot twists, yet they're not the ones who made it, but yet it's also as clever and involving, oh, the mysteries of the world. "Red Rock West's" main plot revolved around a simple money-related murder scheme, but one wrong move, and everyone stumbles down in a domino effect of greed. Nicolas Cage, being the only character with sheds of sanity and moral fiber, being down-on-his-luck, bumped into unexpected trouble, meeting the likes of a scheming sheriff, his wife, and a black-clad hitman. Even telling the plot summary of the film is impossible without revealing even one hint of important detail, so go watch it yourself, it is indeed a stylish neo-western-noir, but it is not as atmospheric as the Coens' "Blood Simple"

Super Reviewer

January 16, 2009
Taut, twisting thriller/mystery is like a lost 1990s Coen Brothers movie. 'Blood Simple' seems to be a definite inspiration, from the stark, beautifully photographed smalltown atmosphere to the setup of one man hiring another to kill his wife. And much like that film, nothing goes as planned in 'Red Rock West' either, as Nicolas Cage finds himself sucked into deeper and deeper consequences. Couldn't predict what would happen next except that Dennis Hopper would eventually come unhinged - who does it any better? Looking at director John Dahl's resume, no surprise that he was behind the camera for another great indie thriller 'The Last Seduction.' In fact, femme fatale Lara Flynn-Boyle is very Linda Fiorentino-like; Dahl certainly has a type. If you enjoyed that movie, you'll like this one too and vice-versa.
Sean L

Super Reviewer

June 12, 2009
I really enjoyed this well constructed modern western noir. Nicolas Cage was very good, staying away from some of his more over the top tendencies and the supporting cast was very solid. It doesn't matter how many crazy villains Dennis Hopper plays, I always seem to like him. The story was elaborate and complex, but never messy and every little piece ended up fitting perfectly well together. Good little thriller.

Super Reviewer

October 5, 2008
Bloody impressive for a medium-budget mystery story.Cage is awful as most of the times but Dahl has studied the early samples of neo-noir and stylistically fuses his picture with unearthly tones and old-fashioned editing to show that Hollywood's ideas can prove alternative at times.
Anthony V

Super Reviewer

August 13, 2007
Good old fashion Film Noir.
August 7, 2010
Gripping thriller with Nicholas Cage, Laura Flynn Boyle and Dennis Hopper. Things just keep going wrong.
August 31, 2009
Music like you would hear in Wild at Heart. Movie was a suprisingly good. Fun and exciting. I can't believe I have not heard of this.
January 29, 2009
Early John Dahl effort that made me sit up and take notice. The guy can do noir. Rural noir especially as evidenced by this.

How did Hollywood eat this guy up and spit him out?
October 21, 2008
Pretty good movie. He of course played his usual smarmy good-for-nothing character (this time, the sheriff) with perfection.
September 1, 2008
By the end of the movie, I felt like Michael. LOL.

If you don't have your integrity, you don't have anything. Good movie.
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