Film delivers compelling 'Proposition'

THE BALTIMORE SUN

By turns grisly and hallucinatory, The Proposition is one of those grand, mythic Westerns, full of wide-open spaces and dank little hellholes, detestable bad guys and virginal women, laconic lawmen and wary natives.

Only this rough-hewn land isn't the American West, but the Australian Outback; the doomed natives aren't warring Indians, but war-weary Aborigines. And while this all may sound like something out of the Sam Peckinpah playbook, the auteurs here are director John Hillcoat, working on only his third feature, and writer Nick Cave, better known as a musician than a screenwriter.

The Proposition (First Look Pictures). Starring Guy Pearce, Ray Winstone, Danny Huston. Directed by John Hillcoat. Rated R. Time 104 minutes.

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