Shot in South Africa by Danish filmmakers, The Salvation is a gratifyingly old-fashioned Western of the sort Hollywood long ago gave up making.
Mads Mikkelsen’s protagonist, a Danish soldier turned immigrant homesteader in the American southwest, shares Clint Eastwood’s hard-bitten taciturnity, and he makes an ideal hero when he embarks on a seemingly suicidal campaign of revenge against ruthless outlaw leader Delarue (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) and his gang.
There are no great surprises in store as the action moves relentlessly towards a final showdown, but the film’s cinematography is gorgeous and the supporting cast, including Jonathan Pryce and Eric Cantona, play their stock characters with gusto. Most striking of all is Eva Green’s mute ‘Princess’, Delarue’s imperious sister in law. Eyes ablaze with fury or surveying the world around her with glacial contempt, she does not need words to mark her mark. And neither does Mikkelsen’s rugged, resilient avenger.
Certificate 15. Runtime 92 mins. Director Kristian Levring.
The Salvation is released on Blu-ray & DVD on Monday 24th August by Warner Brothers Home Entertainment.