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'Slow West' has some marvelous black humor

'West' stars Kodi Smit-McPhee as Jay, a Scottish boy searching for his girlfriend (Caren Pistorius), while actor Michael Fassbender is the outlaw who helps Jay survive.

A24 Films
Image from the movie "Slow West" starring Michael Fassbender, Kodi Smit-McPhee and Rory McCann.

Directed by first-timer John Maclean and shot in New Zealand, standing in for the American West, “Slow West” is about a callow Scottish boy, Jay Cavendish (Kodi Smit-McPhee), who is searching for his girlfriend (Caren Pistorius) from the Highlands. As it turns out, she has a price on her head that attracts the vicious attentions of a swarm of bounty hunters. Michael Fassbender, with his burgeoning charisma, plays the outlaw on her trail who helps the unwitting Jay survive.

The film is too artsy for its own good, but it has some marvelous Coen Brothers-style black humor. Grade: B (Rated R for violence and brief language.)

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