Old Henry Movie Review
Don’t fuck with sassy old farmers is the motto of Old Henry, a quietly badass western starring Tim Blake Nelson and Stephen Dorff.
Nelson plays Henry, a man who has seen some shit in his days but works to keep his wide-eyed son (Gavin Lewis) sheltered from whatever it is he used to do. Their quaint life is disrupted, however, when Henry stumbles across an alleged lawman just short of death and is forced to determine who to trust when a band of mercenaries appear, demanding the man’s return (and the money he has in his possession).
There’s nothing particularly unique nor groundbreaking about Old Henry; it’s simply a western that checks all the right boxes. Courtesy of a lean script and tight direction by Potsy Ponciroli, the movie thrives thanks to its well-executed formula, consisting of sharp, continuous banter and cocky bad guys underestimating an old dude who has a particular set of skills.
When the big showdown comes, I literally grinned when Henry’s big reveal was unleashed; after all, there’s nothing wrong with a western where the good guy dispatches justice in the only way he knows how.
Fans of traditional westerns shouldn’t saunter over to Old Henry; they should hop on the finest horse in the stable and gallop furiously toward it.
Review by Erik Samdahl unless otherwise indicated.