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Critic Reviews for Tracker
A relative lack of action, pared with simplistic message-movie sentiments, that hampers what in any other case is a solid movie.
Ultimately, the drama's more satisfying than exciting, but it's a solid entertainment nonetheless.
What would Ray Winstone sound like if he did a South African accent? Answer: Exactly the same as he would if he was doing a London, Italian or Kathmandu accent. Like either a homicidal tuba or Muttley with a hangover.
With Winstone in the lead you won't expect it to have the action power of Seraphim Falls, which starred Pierce Brosnan and Liam Neeson in 2006, but prepare to be surprised.
There are echoes of classics like Hell In The Pacific in Tracker and the seesawing relationship between the two men is entertainingly handled, if repetitive, until some welcome 11th-hour twists in the plot.
Audience Reviews for Tracker
Say what you will about the long intrusive lines at customs these days, but you've probably never had a gun pulled on you like Arjan van Diemen(Ray Winstone) does when he tries to enter New Zealand from South Africa after the Boer War in 1903. And it has less to do with the rifle he is carrying than the long memories of the British soldiers he fought in a dirty war. Still, Major Carlysle(Gareth Reeves) allows him to enter the country, even providing a bit of work in using his tracking skills to find Kereama(Temuera Morrison), a Maori, unjustly accused of murder. The reward is 100 sovereigns alive, 25 sovereigns dead. At first, "Tracker" might seem like a lot of other movies that have come before it with apparently Ray Winstone playing another one of his patented scary badasses. But as time goes on, his excellent performance uncovers previously unseen layers to his character.(And why nobody had thought of casting Winstone as a protagonist in a western before this, I have no idea.) Even Carlysle tries to do his best for everybody concerned. And while we have seen plenty of the beautiful New Zealand scenery before in "Lord of the Rings" and the bughouse "Top of the Lake," what we are exposed to here is the less familiar brutal history of not only that country, but also that of the Boer Wars, both involving people on the wrong end of the mighty British Empire.(I love van Diemen saying he traveled to New Zealand out of curiosity of the British.) All of which adds depth to this already thoughtful and compelling story. And on a very, very minor note, I would have preferred this movie be called "75 Sovereigns."
A sadly boring film in the end, set in some of the most beautiful countryside in the world. It's a plot everyone knows borrowed from westerns: bounty hunter tracks innocent criminal only to sympathize with him and turn to his side. You know how it's going to end up from the very beginning so there isn't much tension. And that would be fine if they sold it better, but the relationship between Winstone (muttering his way through a hardly understandable South African accent) and Morrison seems forced. Winstone's character development seems forced and Morrison's character is ridiculously inconsistent. Sometimes he's a modern sailor, sometimes a primitive tribesman. Maybe that's the point of the character, some kind of commentary on the dual identities of the Kiwi inhabitants, but it didn't hang together very well. Either way you look at it it succeeds neither as an adventure, character study, or a social commentary. Only as a piece of beautiful visual art does it succeed unquestioningly. It's not a bad film, it's just that it only needed but a push to be something very much greater.
Good movie. An independent film story about one man's greed and another man's fight to undo an unjust cause. The underlying plot of the movie kind of reminded me of midnight run, except the movie takes place in 1903 in New Zealand. I'm with the critics that certified this movie fresh, not the audience ratings that certified the movie as not worth watching. Not a great movie, but good enough to rent. =)
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