The Last Duel

The Last Duel ★★★½

let’s get the bad stuff out of the way:

billy ray cyrus was a bit miscast here. it’s hard to completely buy his (multiple variations) of this character. the fact that he’s playing a french knight makes it even harder to swallow somehow. the mullet is doing all the work.

other than that i was actually surprised with my engagement with this film. this is heavy stuff. what started off as slow big budget hollywood take on kurosawa’s ‘rashomon’ and ‘the virgin spring’ ends up being a slow but rather intense take on… kurosawa’s ‘rashomon’ and ‘the virgin spring’.

it takes its time, but utilizes it’s length in a stealthy way. each perspective peels away the truth in a way that i found emotionally nuanced and actually deeply sad. 

the star of this film here is jodie comer. i have’s watched ‘killing eve’ and definitely not ‘free guy’ but she’s definitely making a mark on the big screen with her performance here of a woman wronged on so many levels.

affleck is playing robert pattinson chasing all the amys, he’s truly channeling his inner lion here. he’s very amusing here. and his moments with ‘french’ adam driver are some of the best and richly offensive scenes in the film. side note: i’m sure disney execs are happy this movie didn’t somehow come out the same year as the last jedi. i’d love to see them try and sell driver’s face on a bunch of action figures with this out there.

this all leads up to a dual that ridley scott knows how to direct with his eyes closed stuck in a cage in a damp dungeon. which is to say: it is fucking intense.

ps. looking forward to the 4 1/2 final cut to be released on 8k crystals in 2027. affleck’s rashomon experience must be told.

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