Ride With the Devil

Ride With the Devil

DVD - 2010
Average Rating:
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In 1862, during the Kansas-Missouri border war, Jake and Jack Bull join the Confederate-sympathizing Bushwhackers after Jack's father is killed by marauding members of the abolitionist Jayhawkers. They are aided by unusual ally, Holt, who's fighting for the South despite being a former slave.
Publisher: [United States] : Criterion Collection, [2010], ©2010
Edition: Director-approved special edition
ISBN: 9781604652499
1604652497
Branch Call Number: 7.914 Ri
Characteristics: 1 videodisc (148 min.) : sound, color ; 4 3/4 in. + 1 booklet (28 pages : color illustrations ; 19 cm)

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k
ktatum82
Jul 01, 2014

Great portrayal of the Missouri/Kansas border during the Civil War.

I admit that I picked up this film solely because Jewel was in it then I found out that Ang Lee did this film, Tobey Maguire was in it as well as Mark Ruffalo (all connected to Marvel films). The film was okay, very violent and focussed almost exclusively on the battles and the intrigue - very little in lightness, romance and Jewel's role appears rather late in the film. She's good as a widower though arguably some of the scenes felt "gratuitous" as if they were there largely to exploit her beauty. Jewel's and Tobey's characters are not particularly likable given that they seem to be racist but they become more likable by the end of the film.

r
roystreet
Feb 14, 2014

Timely (in light of Iraq, Syria), absorbing subject, beautiful location photography, but marred by sub-par acting. This material calls out for guts and glory, anguish and release, but a young, inexperienced (in both senses) cast simply can't put it over. A big part of that is their delivery of the often-poetic period southern speech: either too histrionic or too flat, it seldom delves beneath the surface to reveal the character. P.S. Second audio commentary with the director of photography, sound designer and production designer is interesting for attention to historic detail in costumes, props, lighting, and locations, notably the town that stands in for Lawrence, Kansas.

voisjoe1 Oct 13, 2013

The great director Ang Lee (from Taiwan, then Illinois) made this tale of a band of ruffians whose purpose was to kill as many Union soldiers and Union supporters that they could. It seems that some of these guys were just at the wrong time and wrong place because they did not always feel passionate about the cause they were fighting for. The most interesting character is a former black slave who feels allegiance to a quasi-racist Southerner who gave him his freedom, yet kept him as someone who made him coffee and protected him with his sharp-shooting. The weakness of the movie may be that the characters are not sure why they are doing what they are doing and if they don’t care, why should the audience?

r
Ron@Ottawa
Feb 12, 2013

This film was a box office failure and snuffed by many film critics when it first came out. But I find it to be a well-acted and convincing story with the American civil war as the back drop. Plenty of killings and atrocities to depict one of the darkest periods in American. It is a history lesson by director Ang Lee. Well worth my time to sit through it.

m
Monolith
Dec 17, 2012

I agree with other commentary in that it was: 1.) beautifully filmed -- very scenic; and 2.) rather boring. Overlong, with characters that weren't very engaging (alright, Tobey Maguire/Jake Roedel and Jeffrey Wright/Daniel Holt were marginally interesting). Jewel's tag-along character was awkward, and her smarmy relationship with Maguire was unconvincing. The ending was anticlimactic, leaving me with an "Ummm... okay... That's it?" Certainly not what I was expecting from such a celebrated director as Ang Lee.

d
downsman
Jan 22, 2012

A movie which will disappoint those who seek action and unproblematic oppositions between protagonists and antagonists. However, as a beautifully-filmed portrayal of the deep divisions caused by civil war and what it would be like first to be caught up in the murder and violence, and then be a part of it, it's an absorbing piece. And it helps one understand how an ex-slave could fight (as some did) for the Confederacy.

r
Roosbud
Sep 20, 2011

Boring and a snore

d
docjnsuss
Mar 28, 2011

Kind of a disappointment considering the film has a strong cast. Slow moving during much of the movie.
The subject matter was interesting but there was not enough action/explantion of the actual fighting taking place between the Bushwackers,
Jayhawkers and the Union Army. The title makes no sense. All sides thought they were in the right. Apparently the killing and pillaging on all sides is considered the Devil's work. On a positive note, the horsemanship and beauty of the scenery makes the film worth watching.

r
rgally
Mar 05, 2011

Great cast (Tobey Maguire, Skeet Ulrich, Jewel, Simon Baker of THe Mentalist....)

Directed by Ang Lee (Crouching Tiger, Sense and Sensibility, Brokeback Mountain)

An aspect of the American Civil War that I knew nothing about - interesting for just that reason alone

A bit slow moving in the director's cut but worth a viewing

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m
Monolith
Dec 17, 2012

Daniel Holt: "You supposed to sleep with the wife, Roedel. Great day in the mornin' -- you got to know that much! You supposed to share her bed! That way, if some other man do that, you shoot him."

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