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The Last Victim review – modern dimestore western is Mo’ Country for Old Men

Ali Larter is the only bright spot of this western noir that seems familiar right down to the cod Cormac McCarthy voiceover

This modern western is a case of Mo’ Country for Old Men, though not in an especially good way. An unusually sedate Ron Perlman takes the Tommy Lee Jones old-timer sheriff role, and Ali Larter substitutes for Josh Brolin in fleeing across the south-western scrub. Which would make Ralph Ineson’s criminal scumbag the Javier Bardem/Anton Chigurh equivalent, backed up by his penchant for creosote-throated, metaphysical ruminations in a voiceover that come off like dimestore Cormac McCarthy: “People playing us like pawns on a chessboard. But what happens if those pawns don’t do as they’re told?”

With the influence weighing heavy, debut director Naveen A Chathapuram rigs up a creaking jalopy of storylines. Local badboy Jake (Ineson) kills a loose-tongued associate in a late-night diner, but is also forced to murder two witnesses. He takes the bodies out to the highlands where chum Bull (Kyle Schmid) suggests disposing of them in a nearby nature park. Not a good time for Susan (Larter) and husband to pitch up at the gates on a trip across the wilderness before she takes up an anthropology position at university.

The Last Victim is available on digital platforms on 10 October.

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