Out in a West Texas town there’s a Mayor on a mission to help foster a sense of shared community and brotherhood with the a town on the other side of the Rio Grande. There’s another man, a rancher, who for generations has had a livelihood that has required a freedom of transit back and forth over that river that divides both people and nation.
The Ross Brother’s Western provides deep insight in to the lives of these two remarkable individuals, as well as the community to which they belong. Beautifully shot and edited with a deft touch, this verité wonder makes one feel a part of a far larger narrative, creating through the specificity of the events of this town a profound and universal story of how the contrast between micro and macro culture is a difficult beast to wrangle.
The film’s artistry is infectious, and like their dream-like Tchoupitoulas, the Ross’ sense of both time and space is captivating. Western is both intensely contemporary and utterly timeless, a film that delves deeply into the situation, well past the superficial and simplistic narratives that often stand in for discussion about the United States’ relationship with its Southern neighbour. Both beautiful and brave, the Ross brothers once again prove themselves to be among the most compelling and competent filmmakers working today.