SECTION U.S. Documentary Competition
RUN TIME 93 min
LANGUAGE English and Spanish
SUBTITLES Yes with English subtitles
In his classic novel A Tale of Two Cities, Charles Dickens famously wrote "It was the best of times, it was the worst of times." That line sums up the story of Western, the latest film from Bill and Turner Ross, a documentary destined to become a classic itself. Eagle Pass, Texas, and Piedras Negras, Mexico, two towns on opposite sides of the border have shared a harmonious history until the specter of cartel violence threatens to divide them.
In Eagle Pass we meet Martin Wall, a fifth-generation cattleman, and Chad Foster, the longtime mayor. Defined by self-determination with livelihoods as old as the desert around them, both cowboy and lawman are stripped of life as they know it by forces beyond their control.
With their ravishing signature verité, brimming with metaphor, the Ross brothers have crafted a contemporary story of idyllic harmony suddenly shattered, of darkness on the edge of town. Aptly titled, Western is both a modern take on a classic cinematic tradition and a timely examination of life on the American frontier today—all the more potent because it is true. —D.C.