In the opening sequence of the Seraphim Falls, a former Confederate soldier played by Liam Neeson shoots a nearly unrecognizable Pierce Brosnan in the arm, said Owen Gleiberman in Entertainment Weekly. Brosnan's ex-Union soldier falls down a snowy hill, trailing blood. He extracts the bullet from his arm and then cauterizes the wound with a hot knife, howling in pain. Now that Brosnan is free of his James Bond role, it's time to demonstrate 'œwhat a damn fine actor he is.' This rare, austere Western allows him to do so. Neeson and Brosnan do most of their work here without actual words, said Richard Nilsen in The Arizona Republic. Neeson's vengeful character pursues the resourceful Brosnan over the snowy landscapes of New Mexico, stopping only to glare into the distance. For most of its running time, 'œthe film is downright taciturn.' We don't even know until near the end why Neeson is after Brosnan, or which one is in the right. Unfortunately, just as it's time to solve these mysteries, 'œfirst-time writer-director David Von Ancken goes on a peyote trip,' said Craig Outhier in the Orange County, Calif., Register. Along comes Angelica Huston, peddling snake oil as Madame Louise, and the film attempts to resolve itself through half-baked American Indian mysticism. In that moment, 'œthe illusion is ruined, and we see Seraphim Falls for what it really is: a couple of Irish guys in cowboy hats.'
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