The Kid

Engaging oater potboiler


Sheriff Pat Garret (Ethan Hawke, as always committed) finally tracks down and arrests Billy the Kid (an equally focused Dane DeHaan), but must still transport him to civilization for his trial and inevitable hanging.

But Billy is not the title kid here. Attaching himself to this contentious caravan is 14-year-old Rio Cutler (Jake Schur) a lad on the run from his villainous pimp uncle (Chris Pratt, nicely playing against type) after killing his abusive father. To top it off, Rio’s sister (Leila George) is in dire need of rescue from said uncle’s whorehouse. 

The underlying sentiment is which legend will influence his impressionable adolescent: the noble lawman or the charismatic outlaw. 

Vincent D’Onofrio dusts off the ancient western genre with this gritty, highly watchable directorial debut, eliciting strong performances from his actors. Criticism centers mostly on his inability to decide whether he wants to mythologize these Old West icons or humanize them.

January 31 (100 min)