“We are white men, sir, not beasts.”

If you haven’t seen The Proposition (Hillcoat, 2005), I recommend it to you. I’m not sure there’s a lot of new territory here that John Ford hadn’t already explored in The Searchers and The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance (see my earlier post on these films), but the old puzzle about the relationship between civilization and violence is brilliantly and beautifully retold by first-time screenwriter Nick Cave in the context of a western set in the Australian Outback. These are the same sort of perennial questions about the nature of justice raised again this year by The Dark Knight. (Come to think of it, Liberty Valance and The Dark Knight are almost the same movie!)

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