Sunday, February 16, 2014

Ride with the Devil

In Missouri territory during the Civil War, a Bushwacker (Tobey Maguire) and the rest of his band of Southern loyalists engage in brutal guerilla warfare against the Union hopeful Kansas Jayhawkers. He eventually joins forces with a black soldier (Jeffrey Wright), in the curious position of fighting for the same Rebel cause, and gradually learns of the man's predicament as the two share stories and ride out the war together. Ang Lee's Ride with the Devil is gorgeously filmed and has a unique point of view for a war picture but is ultimately hurt by overlength, redundancy, and unconvincing acting, Maguire being the biggest culprit. Wright turns in an nuanced performance in an underdeveloped role.