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January 07, 2008

Seraphim Falls - 4

Set up as a sort of Western, this film is an intricate chase- where a man named Carver (Liam Neeson), and a few hired hands are pursuing Gideon (Pierce Brosnan) through the Nevada mountains and eventually into the desert. For most of the film the audience is left in suspense of why this chase is taking place. One is never sure whether they want Gideon to escape or Carver to finally kill him. The film uses the chase to give a glimpse of the times by showing an early settlement and a wagon train. Through flashbacks at the final confrontation the viewer discovers the history between these two men during their civil war days in the military. The chase is a scar that Carver is holding onto and is only able to be released from it when he is finally able to contemplate his past face-to-face with Gideon. The ending is rather anti-climatic and doesn't leave the viewer with much closure. The ending alludes to forgiveness and moving past the past, but it also shows the complete loneliness and emptiness of both men as they have been reduced down to mere "survival." The suspense works for a while, but soon makes the film confusing rather than intriguing.

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