Screened as part of NZIFF 2015

Western 2015

Directed by Bill Ross IV, Turner Ross

In this affecting documentary portrait of a latter-day cowboy and lawman, the peace of two small cattle towns on opposite sides of the Texas–Mexico border is threatened by the shadow of Mexican drug cartels.

USA In English and Spanish with English subtitles
93 minutes DCP
Exempt

Directors, Photography

Producers

Bill Ross IV
,
Turner Ross
,
Michael Gottwald

Editor

Bill Ross IV

Music

Casey McAllister

With

Martín Wall
,
Brylyn Wall
,
Chad Foster

Festivals

Sundance, SXSW, New Directors/New Films, Hot Docs, San Francisco 2015

Awards

Special Jury Prize (Verite Filmmaking), Sundance Film Festival 2015

Elsewhere

After the lyrical Tchoupitoulas, sibling filmmakers Turner Ross and Bill Ross IV turn their verite lens to a richly textured, elegiac portrait of cordial relations across the Tex–Mex border, painfully disrupted by the ‘war on drugs’ and its federally imposed border restrictions. We fall in with contemporary exemplars of two classic Western archetypes, a lawman and a cowboy. Chad Foster, the outgoing mayor of Eagle Pass in Maverick County, Texas, is equally at home in English and Spanish. Cattle broker Martin Wall’s century-old family ranching business depends on transactions across the Rio Grande. And his forthright six-year-old daughter will quickly correct any suspicion you might harbour that theirs is primarily a man’s world.

“The film reveals a border where Texans and Mexicans are united, rather than divided, by their languages and their enterprises…. Both mariachi tunes and Methodist hymns are heard, and fully felt, in Western, and the movie itself has the feel of a high lonesome country song crossed with a narcocorrido – a piercing ballad about hard work, the business of living, and how not to get caught in the crossfire.”

— Sheri Linden, Hollywood Reporter