When watching this film, know that director Billy Bob Thornton delivered a first cut that was allegedly in the four-hour range. The studio required that it be two hours, or Thornton would lose “final cut,” and the studio would reserve the right to mess with his movie. So what we get is a fairly good western starring Matt Damon, Henry Thomas and Lucas Black (the little boy from Sling Blade
) that simply stands as a promising hint at what might have been a great film. The film is pretty on the eyes, and the performances are all solid, but it simply feels like too much squeezed into a pair of Wranglers two sizes too small. Whole segments of the film feel shrunken and rushed, especially a romance between Damon and Penelope Cruz and the back story involving Black’s young outlaw. Let’s hope Thornton gets his original cut out there on DVD so we can see what he really intended.