Hollywood veteran Perry King makes his directorial on this Western-style drama that revolves around relationships and past demons show in a way reminiscent of classic Hollywood.
Sam is a an aging rancher who lives on a farmland in Northern California in 1976. His newest ranch hand, Luke Higgins, a mysterious but righteous fellow who has come from various places. At first, Sam’s relationship with Luke is not too great as Sam constantly berates him on the smallest details. When Luke finds one of Sam’s cattle dead, he blames himself and goes to a local bar where he meets Tom Cutler and the two bond with Tom offering to lend Luke a hand in digging a waterhole for Sam.
Meanwhile, Sam has been going through failing memory as he calls Luke “Carson” on numerous occasions. One day, Sam’s estranged daughter Sarah comes to the farm with her son C.J. Sam and Sarah’s familial bond have broken due to the death of Sam’s son Carson and Sam blames himself while Sarah also blames herself. However, as both Sam and Sarah slowly begin to bond again, Luke’s relationship with Sam also begins to become stronger until a turn of events threatens to destroy the bonds for good.
Perry King is a Hollywood legend. From his breakout role in The Lords of Flatbush to his iconic turn as an abused teacher turned avenger in Class of 1984, King has been around for many years in both films and television. Having directed mainly in television, he makes his feature film directorial debut and uses a black and white filter to give his film, a classic Western drama, a look reminiscent of the old days of John Ford and the classic Hollywood era of frontier dramas.
King not only directs, but also churns out a wonderful performance and the embittered Sam Kincaid, who is a rancher who has been having many issues involving his memory. Sam is a combination of bitter father, embittered boss, and a man who seems to be losing more than he expects. King is perfect in this role with an excellent supporting role for Bryan Kaplan, as ranch hand Luke, who at first faces Sam’s wrath as he’s yelled at for seeing a hole in the ground. However, while their relationship seems to be more akin to a boss-worker at first, it does get stronger as the film progresses.
At first glance and impression, one would see Sara Arrington’s Sarah as someone you may not want to like. However, it is clear there is a reason for the estrangement between Sam and Sarah. It involves the very name that Sam constantly finds himself calling Luke. The venting between Sarah and Sam eventually leads to their past demons coming out which in turns eventually shows them finally getting along, along with the appearance of Sarah’s teenage son C.J., played by Luke Colombero, who takes a liking to both his grandfather and Luke. However, the third and final act of the film is where things begin to happen that threatened the just returned strong bonds between all parties involved.
The Divide is a wonderful feature directorial debut for the legendary Perry King. With great performances and shot in a style akin to classic Hollywood, notably John Ford, this is one drama worth checking out.
WFG RATING: B+
Random Media presents a Left for Dead Productions film. Director: Perry King. Producer: Jo Haskin. Writer: Jana Brown. Cinematography: Russ Rayburn. Editing: Gillian L. Hutshing.
Cast: Perry King, Bryan Kaplan, Sara Arrington, Levi Kreis, Luke Columbero, Jack McGuinness, David Lundell, Lilli Passero, Geoffrey Wade, Brendan Wayne.
The film will be released on DVD, Blu-Ray, On Demand, and Digital on January 21, 2020.