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"Bone Tomahawk" Reviews/Discussion - 2016 Horror Challenge: Day 12

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"Bone Tomahawk" Reviews/Discussion - 2016 Horror Challenge: Day 12

Old 09-23-16, 10:15 PM
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"Bone Tomahawk" Reviews/Discussion - 2016 Horror Challenge: Day 12

Bone Tomahawk (2015)

Selected by clckworang





These "October Horror Movie Challenge" threads are for the discussion of the films in the 31 FILM SUBSET list.

The plan is for everyone to watch this film on the October day in the thread title, and to start discussing it the morning of the following day.
You may start discussion early if you want, but the preferred plan is for this to be as much of a group exercise as possible, with all of us viewing it "together" and discussing after.

Of course, you are totally encouraged to participate in these threads even if you haven't watched the movie on the designated day.
Even if you haven't watched it in years, or are not participating in the Horror Challenge, please feel free to chime in.

Spoiler tags aren't always used in here, so if you have yet to see the film BEWARE OF POSSIBLE SPOILERS.






Last edited by Chad; 11-05-16 at 06:03 PM.
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Old 10-07-16, 11:52 PM
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Re: "Bone Tomahawk" Reviews/Discussion - 2016 Horror Challenge: Day 12

Slow going and overly long but ultimately I liked it; things pay off in the end. The mysterious Indians strike a nice balance of realistic and out there even if the odd white powder they're covered in looks like cheap makeup and is distracting. Nick being split in half is nicely gruesome. I was a little surprised to see an actual bone tomahawk (who comes up with such a thing?).

The pregnant Indian women with objects in their eyes/forehead is a gnarly touch.

It seems too magical for the crippled husband to just show up and kill most of the bad guys; the ending while tragic in some ways feels too happy.

The odd ground markings are never explained, it's touches like that which are subtle and add a sense that there's something more to the story just beyond what is showing.

Last edited by Undeadcow; 10-08-16 at 01:19 AM.
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Old 10-12-16, 07:32 AM
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Re: "Bone Tomahawk" Reviews/Discussion - 2016 Horror Challenge: Day 12

This was a first time view for me. I've been wanting to watch it, but never got around to it.

This wasn't really a horror movie. More like a gruesome western. It has enough horror-related content to qualify for the challenge. But anyone that's expecting a horror film might be disappointed.

I enjoyed it, mostly because I'm a sucker for westerns. Although I thought it was a little long. If they cut 30 minutes out of the first 2/3rds, it would be a much better movie. I was also expecting something more from the ending. For all the build-up, it seemed anticlimactic.

For a good double feature, pair this with The Burrowers (2008). It's streaming free at TubiTV (with ads), or you can rent/buy it at Vudu and Amazon Video.

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Old 10-12-16, 12:42 PM
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Re: "Bone Tomahawk" Reviews/Discussion - 2016 Horror Challenge: Day 12

What I wrote for my list a few days ago:

There's a lot to like in this ... good cast, looks great, the look and sound of the "troglodytes" was really creepy, and the idea of combining a western with cannibal-tribe horror is a good one. My main criticism is that at over 130 minutes, this is way too long for the amount of story told.
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Old 10-12-16, 10:40 PM
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Re: "Bone Tomahawk" Reviews/Discussion - 2016 Horror Challenge: Day 12

I watched this and wondered how many people came into this movie expecting another Tombstone movie. Posters for Bone Tomahawk look like any other of the million cowboy movies. I think this movie tried to lull people into thinking it would be a dull shootout at the end...but were surprised with a savage violent end. I imagine people covering their eyes in the movie theater that came thinking they would be seeing a cowboy western, but ended in a gory blood fest. Kind of a twist ending. This being on our Horror watch list, we expected this (salivating and waiting for it to happen). However; the average movie watcher probably did not know this would happen. I wish I would have watched this before it was on a horror watch list.
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Old 10-13-16, 07:43 AM
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Re: "Bone Tomahawk" Reviews/Discussion - 2016 Horror Challenge: Day 12

I love westerns and this movie really tossed in some horrific moments. I love some of the witty dialog and this is one of my favorites of the challenge. I really loved Chicory in this one.

I was kind of dreading the 2+ hour running time on this, as it would limit my viewing for the evening, but I found it moved along pretty well. It was well worth it.
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Old 10-13-16, 07:59 AM
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Re: "Bone Tomahawk" Reviews/Discussion - 2016 Horror Challenge: Day 12

Wasn't long enough, I could watch those actors all day long. Probably favorite FtV so far.
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Old 10-13-16, 09:32 AM
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Re: "Bone Tomahawk" Reviews/Discussion - 2016 Horror Challenge: Day 12

Originally Posted by Trevor View Post
Wasn't long enough, I could watch those actors all day long. Probably favorite FtV so far.
Although my eyes were drooping while I was watching it due to lack of sleep the night before and Happy Hour a few hours before I watched it, I agree wholeheartedly with Trevor's sentiments. The dialogue was SO good, and the actors were SO spot-on, that it was a pleasure just being in the company of these characters for 132 minutes.
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Old 10-13-16, 09:52 AM
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Re: "Bone Tomahawk" Reviews/Discussion - 2016 Horror Challenge: Day 12

Felt like an Italian Cannibal movie dressed up as a western, well after all the cowboy parts. I liked it alot.
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Old 10-13-16, 11:03 AM
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Re: "Bone Tomahawk" Reviews/Discussion - 2016 Horror Challenge: Day 12

Also my favorite first-time view this Challenge. Wow, what a great cast, and the pacing paid off in the end. I kind of want Kurt Russell and Richard Jenkins to be in every movie I watch.

Thanks to clckworang for putting it on the list.
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Old 10-13-16, 10:40 PM
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Re: "Bone Tomahawk" Reviews/Discussion - 2016 Horror Challenge: Day 12

Bone Tomahawk (2015)

How did this Kurt Russel Western wind up in the October Horror Challenge? I knew nothing about this movie, I saw the BD in Best Buy and the cover made it look like a typical western, which I'm not a big fan of. Friends kept suggesting I watch this during October and I thought they were crazy. The secret is that this is a gruesome, slow burn horror western about a group of cowboys who have to rescue some townsfolk from cannibal troglodytes(had to look up the spelling). If you can handle the slow pace, you'll be rewarded(punished?) with a horrifying final act as the heroes show these savages the meaning of Manifest Destiny.

This movie works because of the fully fleshed out and likable characters. Kurt Russel is good as usual, Richard Jenkins plays an aloof and hilarious deputy, Patrick Wilson is a poetry-lover who is determined to get his wife back from the savages, even with a broken leg. My favorite character was Brooder, the cocky, sharp-dressed, Indian-hating loner who insists that smart men don't get married. I didn't even realize until the end of the movie that he was played by pretty boy Matthew Fox. The performances are great, and there's a surprising amount of humor in the film, which really did a lot to help balance out the gory moments later in the movie. I did a lot of wincing and squirming throughout the movie, and now officially know the number 1 way I do not want to die.
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Old 10-14-16, 12:00 AM
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Re: "Bone Tomahawk" Reviews/Discussion - 2016 Horror Challenge: Day 12

I have to also say that, despite being a HUGE Kurt Russell fan, I did not know this movie existed! Thank God it made the subset list or who knows how long it would have been before I saw, or even knew about, this movie! Absolute top notch acting all around... no one was coasting in this one.

Man, The Descent followed by Bone Tomahawk... is there going to be a better couple of subset movies to watch back to back this month??
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Old 10-14-16, 12:40 AM
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Re: "Bone Tomahawk" Reviews/Discussion - 2016 Horror Challenge: Day 12

The Blu-ray offers interesting insight from writer/director S. Craig Zahler. He's apparently written something like 20 different horror scripts for various distributors.


The movie itself is an unusual western merged with horror elements in a fairly seamless manner. It was great seeing Kurt Russell in another Western again, even if the story was unconventionally brutal for the genre.
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Old 10-14-16, 07:36 AM
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Re: "Bone Tomahawk" Reviews/Discussion - 2016 Horror Challenge: Day 12

Originally Posted by Undeadcow View Post
It seems too magical for the crippled husband to just show up and kill most of the bad guys;
Other than being ridiculously slow for the meager amount of story given, the ending was my biggest problem with the movie. 3 men can't take down the Indians but one hobbled guy who isn't even functioning at 50% health does.

I am typically not a fan of slow burn movies and this one was no different. I didn't really feel any tension during the extremely over-long running time to keep me interested throughout. Yeah, the dialogue was interesting at times and the acting was uniformly good but it just dragged and dragged to its unsatisfying ending. I can understand why people are praising it but it just didn't do that much for me.

The splitting part had to be one of the most gruesome things in recent memory though. It just took too long to get to.

Last edited by Spiderbite; 10-14-16 at 07:42 AM.
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Old 10-16-16, 08:31 PM
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Re: "Bone Tomahawk" Reviews/Discussion - 2016 Horror Challenge: Day 12

Sorry that I'm a few days late for my own subset selection. Oops.

This was a first-time view for me. I had been really wanting to see this movie and just hadn't got around to it. I was very pleased that it was a qualifying title and that it ended up getting picked. I figured that it might be a little divisive but am happy that it has been received well overall.

All in all, I really liked it. The cast was all top notch, and I wasn't expecting such a sharp script. For the first few minutes, I couldn't place where I knew the wife who got kidnapped until I remembered Banshee. I liked seeing her in something else.

As far as the runtime goes, I didn't mind at all, but I often enjoy films with a more languid pace. It helped that there was a lot of humor in the interactions and that I enjoyed seeing these characters hang around together. I like Patrick Wilson, but his character did grate a bit. Maybe he was just far more of a two-dimensional character compared to the rest of the characters. I agree that his coming to the rescue was a bit too convenient, but I didn't mind too much.

This challenge has been notable for me for some horrific kill scenes, and this movie has one of them. Yikes. I wasn't expecting that guy to get split in half like that. The flask in the gut was pretty gnarly as well.
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