HomeAudio ReviewsOdd QuickiesQuickie: Horizon: An American Saga - Chapter 1

Quickie: Horizon: An American Saga – Chapter 1

We saddle up and hit the dusty trail to review Kevin Costner's latest directorial effort—the first chapter in his ambitious Western epic.

Logan’s Rating:

Rating: 3 out of 5.

Andy’s Rating:

Rating: 2.5 out of 5.

Show Notes

Ahead of the “Kevin Costner: Director” trilogy (out July 27th), the boys saddle up and hit the dusty trail to review Costner’s latest directorial effort, Horizon: An American Saga – Chapter 1, the first chapter in his ambitious multi-part Western epic. 

Episode Transcript

[00:00:00] Andy: Howdy, folks. This is Andy with Odd Trilogies. I’m here with Logan, and we’ve got another Quickie for you! That means we’re talking about our first impressions, our immediate reaction right after seeing the movie.

[00:00:16] Logan: If you don’t think we’re dedicated to these, I want to let everyone know that we are in Andy’s car right now. It is 11:08 p.m. 

Andy:  We’re in the “recording studio.”

Logan: Yeah, we’re in the usual recording studio, which is Andy’s car. And yes, we’re doing another Quickie. We said for our Bikeriders Quickie that we’d do another one, with probably a fast turnaround, because today we are talking about Horizon: An American Saga – Chapter 1, which will tie into our second trilogy in July, which is the—well, we don’t have a full title just yet, but basically “Kevin Costner’s Directorial Debuts,” per se.

[00:00:51] Andy: Yeah. Well, up until Horizon, his only feature directorial efforts. So this is a, in a way, a little precursor to that.

[00:01:00] Logan: Yes. A return to form for a man who hasn’t done a directing film credit.

[00:01:06] Andy: In about 20 years.

[00:01:08] Logan: 20 years almost.

[00:01:09] Andy: So, yeah. Horizon: An American Saga – Chapter 1 marks the, obviously first chapter in what has basically been Costner’s like, little, not little, big kind of pet project over the last few years that he’s been trying to get made and has sunk much of his own money into. It’s billed as kind of a big western epic, harkening back to the classic westerns. And, yeah, we’ve got two chapters scheduled for release, both of them this summer. Chapter 2 will be out in mid August. Yeah, middle of August. And Costner also revealed at Cannes Film Festival when he premiered Chapter 1, that he’s actually planning four chapters to the Horizon saga. So this is our intro to it, and we’ll see where it goes from here.

[00:02:09] Logan: That’s the kind of most fascinating part about this is because when Andy and I first were thinking about doing Costner’s director trilogy, in terms of his initial direct, you know, directing films from Dances with Wolves, Postman and Open Range, we only, you know, we were excited about doing it. Not because it’s just. Not only just because it’s a fascinating trilogy on its own, but also the fact that, like, Horizon was a return to form. And at the time, we were like, oh, he’s doing a double feature. That’s kind of rad.

[00:02:40] Andy: Yeah.

[00:02:40] Logan: And then only to find out a month or two ago that it’s going to be a quadrilogy.

[00:02:45] Andy: Right. Right.

[00:02:46] Logan: Makes it a perplexing but still very.

[00:02:50] Andy: Fascinating and maybe all the more perplexing now that we’ve actually seen Chapter 1.

[00:02:56] Logan: Yeah, yeah. I want to. I want to. We won’t. We want everyone out there to make it clear that, um, again, when you go out and see this, whether you’re a huge Costner fan or you’re just a big western fan and you’re morbidly curious, keep it in mind what we are talking about. Say we are talking about part one of possible four parts.

[00:03:17] Andy: Yes. And part one. This Chapter 1 makes it very clear that it is only a part one of what feels like it’s going to be four, just based on how much ground we actually cover and how much is clearly set up to be dealt with later.

[00:03:38] Logan: Yeah.

[00:03:39] Andy: So, yeah, I guess this first one, it’s a little tough for me to articulate exactly my feelings on it because it’s hard to review a film for potential.

[00:03:54] Logan: I mean, I will give Costner this. In all the things he’s directed in his career, this is probably the most bold because of the three films we’ll talk about in July, they are all one and done. They are not parts of any franchise.

[00:04:09] Andy: This is ambitious.

[00:04:10] Logan: They were not planning on doing a Postman 2 or Dances with Wolves 2, or anything with Open Range. Like, genuinely, this man has come back out of directing purgatory or retirement, if you will, to basically put all of his chips on what I assume is what he expects to be his magnum opus as a director.

[00:04:32] Andy: Yeah, I would think.

[00:04:32] Logan: Because after. Yeah, like Andy said, it’s hard to really talk about arcs or character development in a way that feels like, oh, part one. Chapter 1 is its own film. Cause the fact of the matter is that it isn’t.

This very much feels like you’re watching a TV show and you’re going, okay, episode one was pretty good. Let’s see if it can either keep that momentum or get better.

[00:05:01] Andy: Yeah.

[00:05:01] Logan: And it’s like three hour episode one.

[00:05:05] Andy: Yeah. And I think the biggest knock against this movie, the thing that’s kind of fundamentally the issue here is that I don’t think there’s a whole lot to latch onto.

[00:05:18] Logan: Not in this one.

[00:05:19] Andy: I don’t think there’s a lot set up that could be interesting.

But like Logan said, there’s almost no sense of resolving anything or even getting over a hill in somebody’s arc. It’s really.

I mean, it 100% set up. Every minute of this movie is set up. There is no resolution. There is no. There’s not even a climax in this movie. No, there’s no climax. No, like, there’s no end of the beginning feeling here. Kind of like in, like, you know, a classic example, like fellowship of the ring. There’s the whole river battle at the end of fellowship of the ring where it’s like, okay, clearly the journey is very far from overdose, but we got over this major obstacle.

[00:06:12] Logan: I would.

[00:06:12] Andy: There’s nothing really here like that.

[00:06:14] Logan: Yeah. Because, again, if this was supposedly four parts from the very beginning in Costner’s head, we were not. We’re not going to spoil the film. But I would love weeks down the line when the film has been out long enough that Costner’s willing to talk about it. I would love to hear his mentality surrounding why he ends Chapter 1 the way that he does.

[00:06:33] Andy: Yeah.

[00:06:33] Logan: Because it is. I will say there are elements to Horizon where if you’re somebody who really liked the sensibilities of Dances with Wolves or kind of like the feeling of how the tone at some points would be very brutal, but not in a way that it’s totally dissonant with light hearted stuff. Sometimes, even when it gets close to being that way, there are moments in Horizon where it’s like, I was watching and being like, yeah, this feels like a film you don’t make today. Like, in terms of how Costner’s approaches to it. And it’s not a bad thing inherently. And it’s not inherently a good thing either. A very unique almost throwback that, like, I could see being a lot more fun in Chapter 2. But as of right now, it’s more.

[00:07:18] Andy: Like inklings of what could be the footage we have seen of Chapter 2, because the trailer for this movie actually includes a lot of footage that’s not in this movie.

The footage we’ve seen for Chapter 2 does look a lot more exciting. Then again, the trailer for this movie looked pretty exciting. And yet here we are telling you, half of it’s not in this movie. Well, it’s funny.

[00:07:44] Logan: Yeah. And I think it’s funny. Cause I think maybe a lot of you listening out there will be like, well, I mean, you two got into the Costner directing films, and you know that each one of those films is, like, at least two. Two and a half. Like, it’s. It is. Costner has never not been, like, a long form, quote unquote, epic period drama kind of person. That’s true. But it is fascinating that now we are through that, getting prepped for that trilogy, seeing his new take on how to pull people back in. And it is a lot of him doing kind of the same stuff, but also not fully committing to some of those ideas because he technically has three more films.

[00:08:25] Andy: Yeah, well, it’s fascinating in that regard. And the ambition of those, you know, knowing that his vision for this is for movies, whether or not those actually come to fruition, his intent is to make four of these really just makes it feel like with how little actually kind of gets done in this movie, makes it feel like you should have just made this a streaming series, man. Like, again. And I don’t know, the years on Yellowstone he’s put in that. Have kind of put him in that, you know, story structure headspace. But, yeah, like, there’s. This really feels more like somebody cut together two or three episodes of a TV show into a movie.

[00:09:14] Logan: It just. It’s so fascinating. Like, genuinely, even after getting out of Chapter 1, now that we’ve seen what the foundation of Horizon: An American Saga is supposed to be, even though I’m just kind of like, okay, this is what it’s gonna be. Final guess I’m waiting to see until August. Yeah, I am. It is still. It doesn’t make Costner as a creative any less fascinating.

[00:09:37] Andy: Oh, no.

[00:09:37] Logan: Because the man is just like, as an actor in both. As a director, he funny just to see the fact that, like, he is on the poster for Chapter 1. I have no doubt he’s gonna be a prominent part in Chapter 2. But the fact is, since Chapter 1 is a lot of setup, there are so many characters.

[00:09:57] Andy: So many characters. And I know, like, none of their names.

[00:09:59] Logan: I know one.

[00:10:00] Andy: I know I know one.

[00:10:01] Logan: One.

[00:10:02] Andy: Hayes.

[00:10:03] Logan: Hayes. Oh, I know two then. I know two.

[00:10:04] Andy: Hayes Ellison, which is Kevin Costner’s character. Or, as we called him, “Hayes Horizon.”

[00:10:09] Logan: Or you said, “John Hayes Horizon.”

[00:10:11] Andy: Yeah. Hayes is his middle name. It’s actually John. John Horizon.

[00:10:14] Logan: Yeah, it’s John and then Lizzie Sienna Miller’s character’s daughter. Because the big thing about, again, with Horizon, the best way I could describe Chapter 1 is it is basically setting up four interwoven. Quote-end quote, “interwoven” western stories that’ll ultimately seem to come together in terms of, you know, the tie—they’re all searching for a place called Horizon.

[00:10:44] Andy: Yeah. The film opens with some settlers way out west trying to, like, literally lay the groundwork for a town that they refer to as Horizon. And then the rest of the movie, we’re kind of seeing these disparate factions of people making their way there or learning about it or whatever. And there are, you know, there are just civilian settlers, there are soldiers, there are hired hands, and there’s a misfit family of outlaws who are stirring up trouble amidst all this. And, of course, there’s also the indigenous perspective. There’s. I can’t remember. What was the-—did they say the name of the tribe, like the people?

[00:11:36] Logan: Again, I don’t know. I don’t think they say any real names.

[00:11:43] Andy: Yeah, there’s a few names tossed around across 3 hours, and it’s like, yeah. Difficult to grab onto.

I think that’s another thing that makes it feel like a TV show is that sweeping multi perspective thing.

Obviously, there are some main players, but it really is like every 15 minutes we’re jumping to, you know, another plot and kind of cycling through these characters. So it’s. I found it difficult to get terribly invested in any of them.

I think I found Costner’s character, or at least the plot that he’s going through, the most interesting. But maybe that’s just because, you know, Costner knows that role. He’s played similar roles before. He’s comfortable in it and he’s good at it.

[00:12:34] Logan: Yeah, he basically plays.

[00:12:36] Andy: Plus he’s the badass of the movie.

[00:12:37] Logan: Yeah. He plays a stranger that comes into a small town. He’s coming in with a cattle crew. But clearly there’s something more.

[00:12:45] Andy: He’s got some other kind of. Yeah.

[00:12:47] Logan: Yeah. And again, it’s the one thing, too, that I think I can understand and why people who like this movie, I can understand as well, is, like, the ensemble is doing a good job.

Like, I do think they’re given a whole lot. That’s the thing, too, is like, because every.

[00:13:00] Andy: Well, they’re given a lot and yet.

[00:13:02] Logan: Not much because, again, I bet it’s like, I would wonder. I wonder how much of, like, Chapter 1 was given to them or if they got both of them as, like, this huge script. And it’s like, yeah, keep in mind there’s only gonna be, like, do this and that. So they were. They were aware of where their characters were gonna be development wise, kind of in the films.

[00:13:21] Andy: Right.

[00:13:21] Logan: But, like, every time I saw Sienna Miller, I thought she was doing a phenomenal job with giving only long looks across from her way. She is. She is just such a just stunning just face, especially when it comes to her acting. And just, like, watching her try to deal with, like, what she goes through, because she basically goes through a trauma early on in the film.

[00:13:44] Andy: Yeah.

[00:13:45] Logan: And just watching her try to get around that trauma while also trying to keep moving on, which is a classic western trope, especially for a female character. And, like. But like, Sienna Miller, I think, does a good job with, like, being able to ground that character enough where it’s like, I like this person. I wouldn’t want anything bad to happen to them, but I wouldn’t cry if they got. If they died. And that’s kind of most of the characters where it’s like, at best, I.

[00:14:10] Andy: Like you well enough.

[00:14:12] Logan: Yeah.

[00:14:12] Andy: But I’m not, like, attached.

[00:14:15] Logan: Yeah.

[00:14:15] Andy: I think if this movie, aside from maybe Costner’s character, if this movie just decided to off any current ongoing character, I would be like, okay, moving on to whoever’s left.

[00:14:27] Logan: I mean, I think the only, like, I. Michael Rooker was nice to see, like, he was putting on an accent. The accent. I could tell he was trying to do an accent early in the film and, like, it just wasn’t coming through as much from his usual accent, but, like, he’s a nice addition to it. Again, like, I think this is a film that if you go to this film because you are specifically a Costner fan or a Sam Worthington fan, a rooker fan, or, like, a Luke Wilson fan, if you see all those names on the. On the poster and you’re like, I’m gonna go see that film for that one person, I think you will be disappointed because again, there’s so many characters that have to just be introduced in 3 hours.

[00:15:07] Andy: Yeah.

[00:15:08] Logan: And also, guess what? There are still characters we have yet to be introduced because we both remember from the trailers there were certain people, we were kind of curious if they were gonna show up, and they haven’t yet.

[00:15:20] Andy: Yeah.

[00:15:20] Logan: So the films themselves, again, it is. We. Maybe we’ve only seen half of the cast. I don’t really know yet. But, like.

[00:15:28] Andy: And who knows how many of these people will last more than you know. The ones we’ve already met may just be first half ers or something.

[00:15:36] Logan: Cause again, too, it’s also fascinating about this. And again, at the time of this recording, I have yet to fully watch Open Range. And Andy’s already done all of his homework for the Costner episode. But Horizon feels like this is the quintessential Western American Dream film that Costner has been wanting to make for a while. In terms of the foundation about Horizon, there probably will be a town that is officially called Horizon at some point in the series. But clearly Horizon, as a title for the film, is supposed to signify the American Dream that a scene across the horizon while moving westward in the late 18 hundreds during the Civil War, post Civil war, and the benefits for people, they were able to expand. And also the downsides in terms of taking land from the Native Americans around that, as well as war and starvation in terms of not knowing the land.

[00:16:39] Andy: Yeah, it feels like he’s a.

His goal here is in one piece, in one body, meaning all four chapters. He wants to kind of create the western to end all westerns, to kind of COVID almost every archetype or subgenre of western out there because, yeah, like you said, he’s kind of covering every base in terms of subject matter commonly covered in westerns.

There’s still a part of me, though. It’s interesting to see that kind of materialize as his goal throughout this movie and yet to not really feel like this first chapter forges any identity of its own. No, no. I guess I would think my natural or my first thought, if I were setting out to do something like this, this big, sweeping project that was going to, you know, not only homage the genre, but kind of encompass it and be that definitive work in the canon, I guess I would kind of chunk it out and kind of make each movie.

Obviously, the overarching characters is natural, but I guess I would have thought maybe this first movie would have covered a certain material and kind of have a little bit of a door closing on that or at least some sort of resolution on that first piece, and then the second piece is about something else, and then that doesn’t really feel like what’s happening here. It just feels like he’s got eight storylines going on and we’re going to get part one of all eight storylines in this movie and part two of all eight storylines in the next movie and part three. And it’s like that’s what makes it feel like a TV show, I think.

[00:18:26] Logan: Especially since we know that he hasn’t done three and four yet.

I’m curious to see if two is a resolution overall. Two?

[00:18:35] Andy: Yeah. Will it be like the end of act one? Is that what it’ll feel like?

[00:18:39] Logan: There’s still a part of me that feels like there could be a time jump involved with three and four and.

[00:18:44] Andy: I mean, if two ends with them, like, finishing Horizon or something, and then there’s a time jump and then three and four about, like, the conflicts that befall Horizon.

[00:18:54] Logan: Because, again, when I think that would make sense, when I think of american saga, too, in terms of a title, it’s like it could be like a Steinbeck esque generational story as well as also, if you were like, you’re saying if he’s trying to be like the. The western to end all westerns, not saying he should do the shootist. But it feels like something where it’s like if you get to part three or part four, you get to the latter half of, like, the westerns where.

[00:19:18] Andy: It’S like, yeah, it’s the early kind of deconstructionist.

[00:19:22] Logan: Yeah, “Horizon isn’t what it used to be,” or maybe Horizon’s changing the way where the establishing faction is like, you know, at a certain point, maybe kids in, like, part one and two are now in their forties or fifties. In part four, maybe Costner becomes the.

[00:19:37] Andy: Villain of it all.

[00:19:38] Logan: Yeah, Costner doesn’t age.

[00:19:39] Andy: I feel like, yeah, he’s.

[00:19:41] Logan: Imagine if it’s.

[00:19:41] Andy: He’s a magical man.

[00:19:43] Logan: It’s part four, it’s 1915, and Horizon still exists. And Costner’s the same age as he is in part one. He’s like, Chapter 1.

[00:19:50] Andy: He’s just this immortal being on the horizon. Just on the frontier.

[00:19:55] Logan: Yeah, there’s a lot of aspects to Horizon where it’s like, yeah, they don’t really make it like this anymore. And there is kind of an endearing quality to that. But once that endearing quality kind of fizzles out for a little bit, it also is like, okay, what’s. What do you want to do next? Because the little bit I can see that, like, there is. Again, it was funny too, because when Andy. When, like, the film ended, Andy was like, well, I don’t know how we’re going to review this unless on potential.

[00:20:23] Andy: Right. Like.

[00:20:24] Logan: Like, genuinely.

[00:20:26] Andy: I mean, you know, I. We can obviously review it for what it is. But the unfortunate reality of that is that there. It doesn’t have much unto itself.

[00:20:36] Logan: Like, yeah.

[00:20:38] Andy: Yeah, there’s. There’s some good. It’s a solid ensemble. It’s generally a pretty movie.

[00:20:45] Logan: Yes. All the landscape stuff.

[00:20:47] Andy: Yeah, the outdoor daytime landscape stuff all looks great. I do think you have to give credit to Mother Earth for some of that. That’s just. You’re shooting beautiful landscapes, so they’re gonna look beautiful no matter what.

[00:21:00] Logan: Credit to Mother Earth and Costner’s Yellowstone paychecks for being able to, like, you know, shoot that. Because, like, again, there’s.

[00:21:09] Andy: There had to be a lot. There. There’s a lot of shots in this that had to be, I think, intricately timed. Like, in terms of getting.

[00:21:18] Logan: Oh, my God. Yeah.

[00:21:19] Andy: All the shots of the yellow forests, like, there’s the yellow trees. Looks gorgeous. Like, I’m sure, you know, they really had to kind of, you know, survey their locations and get the daylight right and stuff as location of the sun. But, like, yeah, like, the.

The scenes that are either interior or take place at night or even worse, interior at night look very flat and weirdly, like, underexposed.

It kind of reminded me of, like, a history channel documentary. When they have the dramatization segments. It felt way more budget than when they were outside in the sunshine.

[00:22:01] Logan: It kind of reminds me again of so far, the two of the three that I’ve seen of the Costner films in our trilogy where it’s, like, both Dances with Wolves and Postman at least, like, visually are, like, pretty good. But it’s not like. It’s not trying to push any boundaries in terms of, like, how can we make this look even more unique or different? Like, it’s. Costner visually is. Excels as a director when it comes to landscapes.

You definitely see that man just being. You could see that man standing on, like, a hill at, like, 04:00 a.m. watching the sun rising, going, fuck, that’s good. Roll the camera. And it’s like.

[00:22:39] Andy: And then pretty much everything else is just, like, functional. Yeah, not bad. But, like, kind of playing Jane. Get the job done.

[00:22:47] Logan: Yeah.

[00:22:48] Andy: Okay. We’re shooting a conversation scene. All right. This looks exactly how you’d expect it.

[00:22:52] Logan: But you’re right. If you. If you like, literally, if you took, like, an episode of, like, Hatfields & McCoys, which also Costner’s in.

[00:22:57] Andy: Yeah.

[00:22:58] Logan: And you interject certain scenes from Horizon in it, too, you’ll probably see like, yeah, it is. It mean you can. I mean, get credit to this film where it’s due. Like, considering how much money Costner’s put into this and how much probably new line and other companies have put into this movie as well. There is very little moment when watching this three hour film where I, like, there was any CG that was noticeable or super bothered me. There were only two instances where I saw CG and it wasn’t even like, oh, that’s bad. It was more just like. That makes sense why you use CG for that.

[00:23:32] Andy: Yeah. I mean, the kind of opening sort of settlement attack scene at night, there’s some kind of obvious, like, CG fire and sparks and things there. But, yeah, you’re. I mean, for the most part, this looks like a very in camera, tangible movie. I do appreciate that about it. And a lot of the. A lot of the action that’s not in this movie, but is shown off for the next movie also looks very real and very cool.

[00:24:03] Logan: Oh, yeah. There’s. There’s. There’s a cool ass shot in the trailer for Chapter 1. Now, we will say it’s just Chapter 1 and two.

[00:24:10] Andy: Chapter 1 AND 2.

[00:24:11] Logan: They’re both again. That Andy and I were like, that is something that people do not do anymore. That’s really fucking cool. And I hope there’s more stuff like that. And then, of course, we watch this movie, and when we are not gonna get that shot, we’ll get it next time, I guess.

[00:24:26] Andy: And while we’re talking about it, all this footage that’s not in this movie, I think it’s worth mentioning without spoiling the ending for this movie.

[00:24:34] Logan: Yeah.

[00:24:35] Andy: The structure of the ending is unlike anything I think either of us have really seen.

[00:24:41] Logan: I actually pinpointed exactly what it reminded me of, and I don’t want to say it on the quickie, because if I spoil, because if I do, people will go, I know exactly what you mean.

[00:24:51] Andy: Yeah. But it does feel very, very. On the next episode of.

[00:24:56] Logan: Let’s just say I haven’t seen a modern film do that, honestly, probably since, like, 2011. And that, like, then. That’s 13 years ago, I’d seen a film that was like, oh, I guess we do that still.

[00:25:09] Andy: Yeah.

[00:25:09] Logan: Now is to, like, sit there with.

[00:25:11] Andy: Horizon film just kind of, like, without announcing, it just kind of shifts into, like, teaser mode.

[00:25:21] Logan: Yeah.

[00:25:22] Andy: Right towards the end. And it’s like, “oh, okay. This is how this movie ends.”

[00:25:27] Logan: I think it was. I mean, I think Andy got it right when I asked him this, but, like, when we’re in the theater watching it, I turned to him and I go, “How is this gonna end in a way that it’s, like, conclusive in some way?” And you’re. And you’re like, “I don’t know, but I think we have, like, 20 minutes left.”

And then, like, when we got to that point, I was like, “Wow, okay. I mean, I guess there are worse ways, less exciting ways.”

[00:25:58] Andy: I mean, certainly, to the ending’s credit, it was like, “Okay, well, despite not really getting much out of that, the second part looks cool!”

[00:26:09] Logan: It does. Again, like, I watch it. I am not completely turned off about the American Saga. I would. I want Chapter 2 to be. Well, now, the bar for Chapter 2 is much higher than Chapter 1.

[00:26:21] Andy: Yeah.

[00:26:21] Logan: Because now that Chapter 1 is not the worst Costner film I’ve ever seen. Fantastic. We’ve now hit that bar. You’ve jumped over it, done a few flips. Now, Chapter 2, it’s much higher. You’re gonna have to make me want a 3 and 4.

[00:26:35] Andy: Yeah.

[00:26:37] Andy: Sell us going into the middle.

[00:26:40] Logan: Yeah. Especially when we. Most people who are probably going into this are gonna be well aware that this is the last thing you’ve shot. You haven’t done three and four yet. You really have to sell people on a story. That’s warrants. Two more, possibly. But knowing Costner, two more three hour films.

[00:26:58] Andy: Yeah.

[00:26:59] Logan: So like a six hour event on top of the next film, which will probably also be 3 hours.

[00:27:04] Andy: Absolutely.

[00:27:05] Logan: So it’s like, this is you again. Only Costner, as a creative could basically look someone in the face straight and with, like, no hesitation going, I want to make a twelve hour western epic.

[00:27:21] Andy: And no, we’re not putting it on streaming.

[00:27:23] Logan: We’re not putting it on streaming. And I’m not going to do.

[00:27:26] Andy: It’s a movie, damn it.

[00:27:27] Logan: And I’m not going to do it, like, only 10% soundstage or some bull. I could just see him. We have to make this doing it for real. Need to be a traditional, old school Hollywood film. And just seeing some studio heads just, like, shit themselves. Be like, Kevin Costner just asked me to make a film no one makes anymore.

And we’ll see, like, again, I would probably say I give this a three out of five. Like a very light three out of five.

[00:27:56] Andy: Yeah, I’m feeling like 2.5 / 5. I feel very middled by it because I’m like, there are pieces of this I’m interested in. The things you set up could totally be compelling. But also, I didn’t get much out of this experience, this three-hour experience. I came away unsatisfied, ungratified, un-thrilled.

[00:28:20] Logan: I was whelmed.

[00:28:21] Andy: Yeah, it is very middling. Yeah. And it is. It’s gonna depend on how it goes from here. It is. It’s funny. Like, I’m, you know, kind of trying to picture one day when all four of these movies are out, assuming they all get made.

This feels like the one that all, like, if all four movies make up for a great saga and I revisit this, this feels like the movie. I’ll just skip to get to the good parts.

And in a way, kind of reminds me this is gonna be a strange comparison, but in a way reminds me of like the first of the Evangelion rebuild films where it’s like, were I to go back and watch those, I would almost want to just start it too because that’s when that kind of diverges and goes interesting in its own way. And this could be a similar thing where it’s like part one is all set up, doesn’t offer you a whole lot, and then two maybe gets to all the satisfying stuff.

[00:29:27] Logan: Yeah, I think other thing depends too, because, yeah, with the Evangelion rebuilds, it’s like that first film is basically just reminding you of what you like. And then with Chapter 1 of Horizon, technically it also does that. But it’s less about the actual characters and the actual plot is more just a three hour film being like, don’t you just remember how much you liked westerns like this?

[00:29:49] Andy: And it’s like, yeah, which may not be as effective at saying that as Costner thinks.

[00:29:54] Logan: Yeah, I guess. But like, okay, like, what do we want to do next after that? And so it shows this is a good a film. That’s a good example of why most studios, or why most creatives, if they want to do a franchise or do more in something, they will still, they make a solid first film that stands on its own. So when a studio is like, we would like to make more, you go, well, just so happens if I pull out from my back pocket, I could do a trilogy or I could do another.

[00:30:24] Andy: Right, right.

[00:30:26] Logan: Seeing this, it’s like, yeah, at least it’s. You can clearly see that. Like, you know, if we go down to the point, basically, if we get to chapter four and Chapter 1 is my favorite one, that’s a bad sign.

[00:30:40] Andy: Yeah.

[00:30:40] Logan: So that’s, that is where I’m at now.

[00:30:43] Andy: I think if we even get to chapter three and Chapter 1 is my favorite, I might bail at that point.

[00:30:49] Logan: Yeah, probably. Yeah. At that point it’s either that or some cost.

But yeah, I mean, again, it is if you are a big Costner head and you’re just excited that Costner is doing a directorial, you know, return. Like, I think it might be worth watching in the future.

Maybe when. Maybe when part two is also out.

[00:31:10] Andy: Right.

[00:31:11] Logan: I think when once you maybe do a six hour double feature, if you just like, really? If you have a Saturday.

[00:31:16] Andy: Oh, you know, the AMC’s are gonna be airing double features of this one.

[00:31:20] Logan: Could you imagine with chapter four? When chapter four comes out? If it comes out. If they do a twelve hour all day marathon. All day marathon, horizon marathon. Tune in like it goes from, like, it goes like, from 03:00 p.m. on Thursday to, like, Friday morning, like at 12:00 a.m. is when I played.

They don’t do midnight showings anymore. Could you imagine if they did this?

That’d be so funny. But yeah, I mean, again, we don’t regret seeing it, but we are now. We are curious to see if two can even, you know, what is it going to bring to the table?

[00:31:59] Andy: Yeah, it’s got to. It’s got to do something big, especially.

[00:32:02] Logan: For you, because, like, you know, the benefit that you going into this almost to a degree is that you’ve seen a Costner film that really grabbed you.

[00:32:10] Andy: Yeah. I mean, coming off of Open Range, which I really, really enjoyed. And, like, honestly, that feels like Costner doing the quintessential western. And he did it really well. And I was really impressed.

[00:32:21] Logan: I’m excited.

[00:32:21] Andy: So I was excited to see this movie for that reason because it was like, “oh, if he’s going to revisit westerns again and do this sweeping, quintessential saga 20 years later, he’s got to really have something here.” So Chapter 1 definitely kind of left me wanting in the excitement regard that Open Range gave me.

[00:32:45] Logan: Yeah, I can’t wait to talk about that more on the trilogy itself.

[00:32:50] Andy: That is Horizon: American Saga

[00:32:52] Logan: hyphen Chapter 1.

Get in a month and a half.

[00:32:58] Andy: Yeah, yeah. We’ll probably do another quickie for that. Might as well. But, yeah, I mean, we’ve got.

Let’s see. Up next, we’ve got our Shannon Nichols Sampler trilogy. That’ll be on the 13th. And then we’ll have our Kevin Costner trilogy on the 27th.

I think, between now and then, we will probably have reviews of MaXXXine, which I think Logan’s gonna do. And I wanna do a review of long legs, the Nicolas Cage scary movie.

[00:33:32] Logan: I’m not gonna hold Andy to this, but I mean – [Andy laughs] — No, no, no, seriously. But, like, if one of us does a write up of Horizon in the near future – we’re not gonna put that on the schedule, but, like, we might. There could be a possibility that maybe, you know, the passion hits us sometime in the next week or two where it’s like, I wanna really fully talk about how I felt.

[00:33:56] Andy: Sure. There are a lot of thoughts that we can’t really get into on a spoiler free review.

[00:34:02] Logan: Yes. Even though there wasn’t a lot that happened in those 3 hours. It is still a three hour film.

[00:34:09] Andy: A lot of questions coming to mind.

[00:34:11] Logan: A lot of questions and a lot of interesting choices in terms of performances. “Who got the spotlight?” is definitely one of the most interesting parts of Chapter 1 because it warrants the question, “Is this person getting a spotlight because 1) we will never see them again, or 2) because they’re major players, who might sneak into two, three, four films?” But, yeah, that’s. There it is.

[00:34:34] Andy: Yeah, that’s Horizon. So we’ll see you when we see you.

[00:34:39] Logan: Yeah. Thank you so much for listening. I’m Logan Sowash.

[00:34:42] Andy: And I’m Andy Carr.

[00:34:43] Logan: Bye.

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Freelance writer out of Indianapolis. Co-host of Odd Trilogies podcast. Whether it's films or television, I'm always down to watch!

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Wishes he could forego sleep to watch more movies. Besides co-hosting Odd Trilogies and writing reviews, Andy builds Gundam models, loves on his three cats, and spends way too much time managing his Plex server. You can follow his movie-watching habits on Letterboxd.

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