In a Valley of Violence is an interesting cross section of my interests. I’m a fan of Westerns and I’m also a fan of Ti West, so this was a movie made for me. I had tried to watch it before, but it left the service before I was able to then. I decided to finally watch it because his movie X was released earlier this year and I loved it and the prequel to it titles Pearl is coming out later this month.
In a Valley of Violence was written and directed by Ti West and he made a hell of a Western. His script and direction made for a compelling story that’s improved by costume, production, and set design. The story is a new take on a standard Western with it being a combination old Western and new Western. The violence is given more weight with not only the gore but with the characters dwelling on the violence, like the newer Westerns tend to do. That’s only helped by the amazingly stacked cast.
Ethan Hawke, Taissa Farmiga, James Ransone, Karen Gillan, John Travolta, Burn Gorman, Toby Huss, Larry Fessenden, Tommy Nohilly, and Jumpy are all absolutely amazing in In a Valley in Violence. I want to mention how amazing Jumpy was as Abbie. I don’t think the story would have had the same weight if Jumpy wasn’t such an amazing dog actor as well as sharing an amazing chemistry with Ethan Hawke. Ransone played a wholly different kind of character than I’m used to seeing from him. This is very different from Deputy So-and-So, which threw me with how well he played the villainous character. Huss, Fessenden, and Nohilly are great as the lackies for Ransone’s character. Fessenden excels as a lackey and should be a voice in a Western videogame. Farmiga, Gillan, and Travolta are amazing as well.
The effects in In a Valley of Violence really make the violence have as much weight as it does. I really want to mention the final kill of the movie. It’s a level of violence that surprised me, so much so that I changed how I was sitting. The music and sound design are both amazing. Jeff Grace’s score gives the movie such a classic Western feel.
In the Valley of Violence is a hell of a movie and is another fantastic Western that’s been released in the last decade. I was blown away by the stacked cast as the credits started and I was sure that I would be in for a great movie, rather than just hoping. This solidifies me as a fan of Ti West’s movies. You can stream it on Netflix. I give In a Valley of Violence 10 straight razors out of 10.