Red Rock West (1992)

“Where nothing is as it seems.” In this highly entertaining neo-noir from director John Dahl (The Last Seduction), Nicolas Cage stars as “Michael Williams,” a luckless drifter and injured ex-soldier who becomes embroiled in a murder-for-hire plot (he’s mistaken for a hitman). A remote Wyoming town is the setting for this offbeat drama that features edgy performances and a foreboding atmosphere. Dennis Hopper excels as the psychotic killer known only as “Lyle from Dallas.” The solid cast also includes J. T. Walsh as “Wayne” the bar owner and Lara Flynn Boyle as his wife, femme fatale “Suzanne.” In addition, Dwight Yoakam makes his film debut as “Truck Driver.” Highlights include the shootout at the cemetery and the final scene on the train. The film also boasts an excellent soundtrack that includes “Folsom Prison Blues” (Johnny Cash), “Crime of the Century” (Shania Twain), “Strangers an Hour Ago” (John Brannen), “Redneck Girl” (Kentucky Headhunters), “Should Have Been a Cowboy” (Toby Keith) and “1,000 Miles from Nowhere” (Yoakam), among others. Useless Trivia: Hopper was originally slated as “Wayne” but fortunately insisted on portraying “Lyle.”

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