Hostiles is a 2017 American Western film written and directed by Scott Cooper, based on a story by Donald E. Stewart. It stars Christian Bale, Rosamund Pike, Wes Studi, Ben Foster, Stephen Lang, Jesse Plemons, Rory Cochrane, Adam Beach, Q'orianka Kilcher, and Timothée Chalamet. It follows a U.S. Cavalry officer who must escort a Cheyenne war chief and his family back to their home in Montana in 1892.
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Scott Cooper|
|Screenplay by||Scott Cooper|
|Story by||Donald E. Stewart|
|Music by||Max Richter|
|Edited by||Tom Cross|
|Distributed by||Entertainment Studios Motion Pictures|
|Box office||$30.9 million|
The film had its world premiere at the Telluride Film Festival on September 2, 2017, and had a limited release in the United States by Entertainment Studios starting December 22, 2017, before going wide on January 26, 2018.
In 1892, Wesley Quaid and his family are attacked by a Comanche war party who proceed to kill and scalp him and kill his three children, but his wife Rosalie manages to escape capture, hiding in a thicket.
In Fort Berringer, New Mexico, Captain Joseph Blocker rounds up an escaping Apache family and brings them to the fort. He is then called to the office of Colonel Abraham Biggs, who informs him of his final orders before retirement, direct from the President: escort dying Cheyenne war chief, Yellow Hawk, and his family back to their tribal lands in Montana. He reluctantly accepts, facing a court-martial if he doesn't, despite his history with the chief, including the murders of several friends. He chooses a detail to accompany him: Private "Frenchie" DeJardin, the youngest; Lieutenant Kidder, fresh from West Point; old friend 1st Sergeant Thomas Metz; and Corporal Woodson, a Buffalo Soldier.
They begin their journey, but diverge from their path to investigate the charred Quaid house. Inside they find the emotionally scarred Rosalie, who, though initially hostile towards the Cheyenne family because of the previous attack, agrees to sleep in their camp after coaxing from Blocker. She buries her family the next day, and accompanies Blocker and his detail on their journey. They are soon ambushed by the Comanche party, who kill Frenchie and critically wound Woodson, although he survives. After this event, Yellow Hawk convinces Blocker that it is in his best interest to unchain him and his family. The next day, the bodies of the surviving Comanche party, who had fled the day before, are discovered dead. Blocker deduces that Yellow Hawk and his son, Black Hawk, killed them.
After a brief stop in Colorado to drop off Woodson and Rosalie, Blocker is instructed to take disgraced Sgt. Charles Wills to be courtmartialed and hanged at a stop along the way to Montana. Joining Blocker’s company to oversee Wills’s hanging are Corporal Tommy Thomas and Sergeant Malloy. Meanwhile, Rosalie decides to continue on with Blocker, despite being offered a place to stay in Colorado until Christmas. One night, the women are abducted by three fur traders as they wash dishes in the stream by their camp. The company, assisted by Yellow Hawk and Black Hawk, manage to track down the fur traders and slaughter them as they rescue the women, although Sergeant Malloy is killed. During a downpour, Wills manages to fool Kidder into sympathetically undoing his chains, only to kill him and escape the company. He is later tracked down and killed by 1st Sergeant Metz, who then takes his own life, succumbing to decades of PTSD.
Blocker arrives with the dying chief at his tribal lands in Montana where he dies and is buried. The landowner arrives as the chief is buried and threatens to kill Blocker and the rest of the group for burying an Indian on his land. Blocker tells the landowner that the chief is not leaving the land, which results in a gun battle that kills Black Hawk, his wife Elk Woman, and his sister Moon Deer, as well as Corporal Tommy Thomas—leaving only Blocker, Rosalie, and Little Bear alive. In the final scene, Rosalie and Little Bear reluctantly depart on a train from Montana to Chicago, without Blocker, but at the last second Blocker jumps on the back of the train to start a life with the two.
- Christian Bale as Captain Joseph J. Blocker
- Rosamund Pike as Rosalie Quaid, a suicidal widow who undertakes the harrowing and perilous journey after the murder of her family on the plains by Comanche Indians.
- Wes Studi as Yellow Hawk, the father of Black Hawk and Moon Deer, an imprisoned and sickly war chief being taken home to die.
- Ben Foster as Sergeant Charles Wills, a criminal whom Blocker is escorting north.
- Stephen Lang as Colonel Abraham Biggs, Blocker's commanding officer
- Rory Cochrane as 1st Sergeant Thomas Metz, a war-weary Non-commissioned Officer who is among Captain Blocker's oldest confidants.
- Jesse Plemons as Lieutenant Rudy Kidder, a fresh West Point graduate Blocker picks to help escort the war chief home.
- Timothée Chalamet as Private Philippe DeJardin, the youngest member of the unit tasked to escort the war chief home.
- Jonathan Majors as Corporal Henry Woodson, a Buffalo Soldier and member of the unit tasked to escort the war chief home.
- Adam Beach as Black Hawk, Yellow Hawk's son and Moon Deer's brother.
- Q'orianka Kilcher as Elk Woman, Black Hawk's wife.
- Xavier Horsechief as Little Bear, the son of Black Hawk and Elk Woman.
- Paul Anderson as Corporal Tommy Thomas, a soldier escorting Wills to his hanging.
- Ryan Bingham as Sergeant Malloy, a non-commissioned officer accompanying Wills to his hanging.
- Peter Mullan as Lieutenant Colonel Ross McCowan, Minnie's husband.
- Robyn Malcolm as Minnie McGowan, Ross's wife.
- Scott Wilson as Cyrus Lounde, the land owner
- Bill Camp as Jeremiah Wilks
- John Benjamin Hickey as Captain Royce Tolan
- Scott Shepherd as Wesley Quaid, Rosalie's slaughtered husband.
The project was announced in February 2016 with Scott Cooper as the director and Christian Bale starring as the main character. In March, Rosamund Pike was cast, and a production start date of July was announced. In April, Jesse Plemons was added to the project as a member of the unit and his role was to escort the war chief home. Wes Studi and Adam Beach were signed in June. Studi played the dying war chief. In mid-July, Timothée Chalamet joined the film playing as Private Philippe DeJardin. Filming began late July in Santa Fe. Ben Foster, amongst others, were added to the cast at the beginning of the filming. Ryan Bingham, who also stars in the film, is writing original songs for the film.
The film had its world premiere at the Telluride Film Festival on September 2, 2017. It was also screened at the Toronto International Film Festival on September 10, 2017. Shortly after, Entertainment Studios acquired U.S. distribution rights to the film. It was released in a limited release in the United States on December 22, 2017, before expanding wide a month later on January 26, 2018.
In the United States and Canada, following several weeks in a limited run where it grossed $1.8 million, Hostiles had its wide expansion alongside the release of Maze Runner: The Death Cure, and was expected to gross around $10 million from 2,813 theaters over the weekend. It ended up opening to $10.2 million, finishing third behind The Death Cure ($23.5 million) and holdover Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle ($16.4 million). In its second weekend the film dropped 46% to $5.5 million, finishing fifth at the box office.
On review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes, the film holds an approval rating of 73% based on 176 reviews, with a weighted average of 6.8/10. The website's critical consensus reads, "Hostiles benefits from stunning visuals and a solid central performance from Christian Bale, both of which help elevate its uneven story." On Metacritic, which assigns a normalized rating to reviews, the film has an average score of 65 out of 100, based on 41 critics, indicating "generally favorable reviews". Audiences polled by CinemaScore gave the film an average grade of "B" on an A+ to F scale, while comScore reported an overall 72% positive score.
Following its world premiere at the Telluride Film Festival, Sasha Stone of TheWrap, wrote of the audiences' reaction to the film, saying, "Riveted by the glorious storytelling of Hostiles, a few Telluride audience members burst into spontaneous applause as it built to its conclusion". Todd McCarthy of The Hollywood Reporter wrote praise of the film and of the performance of Christian Bale, concluding that the film is an "estimable piece of work grounded by a fine-grain sensibility and an expertly judged lead performance".
|Award||Date of ceremony||Category||Recipient(s) and nominee(s)||Result||Ref.|
|San Diego Film Critics Society||December 11, 2017||Best Costume Design||Jenny Eagan||Nominated|||
|Saturn Awards||June 2018||Saturn Award for Best Action or Adventure Film||Hostiles||Pending|||
|Saturn Award for Best Actress||Rosamund Pike||Pending|
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- Schilling, Vincent (2018-01-08). "'Hostiles' Movie Starring Wes Studi, Christian Bale Will Screen in DC". Indian Country Media Network. Retrieved 2018-01-21.
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