Down in the Valley

Director: David Jacobson
Year Released: 2005
Rating: 1.0

Aggressive teen (Evan Rachel Wood, still in hormonal-and-ready-to-fight/Thirteen mode) inexplicably falls for a cowboy weirdo (Edward Norton, with an unconvincing drawl) who works at a gas station, much to the chagrin of decorated war-vet Dad (David Morse, good as being serious). I experienced problems with this from the beginning: I couldn't plausibly accept the 'immediate attraction,' I couldn't see Norton's character as anything other than a crackpot (therefore aligning myself as a viewer with stern Morse, who is supposed to be a 'bad guy') and I couldn't accept the violent action on Norton's part to move the picture into act three (yes, I did say he's a nut, but the scene feels contrived). The ending, with its Colt pistols and white horses, comes straight out of Young Guns. Note to filmmakers: please do not be inspired by Young Guns.