Poetry and Puncture Wounds

There's an old saying about Ginger Rogers, who did everything Fred Astaire did—but backwards and in heels. This Australian western seems to be saying something similar about gritty American westerns: You think that's hard? Try living in the Outback. The Proposition mucks about in dust, blood and moral ambiguity with all the cheerfulness of a Nick Cave song—which is appropriate, seeing how Cave wrote the screenplay and composed the score. Guy Pierce plays a scoundrel sent to murder his older brother so that his younger brother will be spared. It's all very gorgeous, solemn, and ponderous, except for the many excellent scenes of bullets and spears poking holes in people. The informative, dour commentary confirms the filmmakers think their movie is important, but who cares? It's mostly a big bucket of sour-faced fun.

Also recommended this week: Dracula: 75th Anniversary Edition; Frankenstein: 75th Anniversary Edition; The Best of The Kids in the Hall; The Last Broadcast; A Nightmare On Elm Street: Infinifilm Edition; Pride N Prejudice (1996): Collector's Edition; Teen Titans: Season 2; The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974): Ultimate Edition; Voltron: Volume 1.

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