The Frontier

Critics Consensus

No consensus yet.



Reviews Counted: 6

liked it

Audience Score

User Ratings: 71


All Critics | Top Critics
Average Rating: N/A
Reviews Count: 0
Fresh: 0
Rotten: 0


Average Rating: 3.3/5

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Movie Info

Filmed in the California desert on Super 16mm, The Frontier weaves elements of classic noir, American western, and the hard-boiled paperbacks of the '50s to create a timeless world within which the film's colorful characters roam. Shadowy, textured, and wonderfully lush, The Frontier looks like it popped out of the front cover of a gritty paperback novel. A female drifter (Jocelin Donahue, The House of the Devil) discovers a violent gang of thieves at a desert motel run by a mysterious woman (Kelly Lynch, Drugstore Cowboy) and hatches a plan to escape with their stolen cash. An official selection of SXSW 2015, this riveting neo-noir keeps viewers guessing to the last exhilarating shot.

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Critic Reviews for The Frontier

All Critics (6) | Top Critics (1)

  • An appreciably moody but dramatically stilted crime drama that exudes a certain retro appeal before collapsing into a series of empty neo-noir poses.

    Oct 24, 2016 | Full Review…

    Scott Foundas

    Top Critic
  • The Frontier serves as an excellent showcase for its actors as well as a striking calling card for Shai's directorial chops. However, the flaws in its storytelling and character development do keep it from being as great a film as it could have been.

    Nov 1, 2018 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…
  • There's definitely something refreshing about seeing a full-blown retro crime thriller, but Oren Shai's feature directorial debut is reduced to a mere novelty because there's so little access to the main characters.

    Oct 24, 2016 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…
  • The Frontier is a blast from the past as far as suspenseful thrillers go, but it's not an entirely invigorating one.

    Oct 24, 2016 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review…
  • Director Oren Shai steadily builds a timeless pulp world, one that purloins from 30s seedy gangsters, 50s greasers, and 70s slick crime.

    Oct 24, 2016 | Full Review…
  • Well-paced, nicely shot, and smart enough to give each member of the ensemble a few moments to shine.

    Jan 2, 2016 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for The Frontier


The film has a very low budget but the lack of funding doesn't stop this film from being intriguing. I enjoy noir films and this one reminds me of some of John Dahls early 90s films, the pacing is there and if you aren't into slow burning films, this won't work for you. The lead actress has a vulnerability and beauty which is quite a find for a film of this budget. The cast are all quite uniquely chosen, they have odd quirks and interesting characteristics that ensure you stay interested. It took a little while to realise Lynch was one of the supporting characters, she definitely has the presence to give her character an odd weird feeling. The DOP and filmmakee deserve the biggest write up as the shots are sometimes taunt and have that unnerving David Lynch style. Aint it cool news had written a positive review on this which remindes me while I was looking for something else. I like tight thrillers on minimum budget and this fills the void, I just hope Dahl has a chance to return to similiar movies like this. The Last Seduction is on my rewatch list and I hold this right up there with that film, just a fraction weaker. 02-07-2017.

Brendan Nicholls
Brendan Nicholls

Super Reviewer

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