Hollywood never seems to tire of making movies about down on their luck antiheroes taking on the law in the dusty heat of the American Southwest, probably because audiences never get tired of spending their money on them. It’s a piece of cinematic heritage that goes back to the Western, and Hell Or High Water—a modern-day outlaw tale from screenwriter Taylor Sheridan (Sicario)—is the newest example of the genre. Chris Pine and Ben Foster play a divorced father and his ex-convict brother who, when faced with with imminent foreclosure of their family’s West Texas farm, decide to do the only thing they can think of: load their truck full of artillery and make a forced withdrawal from the offending bank. Circumstances inevitably spiral out of control, and they soon find an aging veteran Texas Ranger (Jeff Bridges) dogging their cowboy-booted steps.
The high-tension thriller from by British filmmaker David Mackenzie (Starred Up) debuted to positive reviews at the Cannes Film Festival back in May. The A.V. Club’s Mike D’Angelo gave it a B+, calling it “the sort of sturdy, mildly ambitious genre effort that’s now rare enough to feel treasurable.”
Hell Or High Water will decant itself into theaters on August 12.