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Don't Come Knocking review

Two decades on from Paris, Texas, director Wim Wenders reteams with actor/playwright Sam Shepard for another poetic meditation on the American West. This time it's Shepard who stars as a washed-up screen cowboy who flees the set of his latest oater to reacquaint himself with the mother he hasn't seen in 30 years (Eva Marie Saint), the old flame he deserted (Jessica Lange) and the grown-up son he never knew he had (Gabriel Mann).

Don't knock the unsteady logic that steers this tale: Shepard clearly didn't spend much time pondering narrative or character motivation. Nor should we expect clarity from a film that wears its elusiveness like a badge of honour. It's best to simply accept Wenders' work for what it is - a rather precious exercise in wilful obscurity, alleviated by flashes of laconic humour and DoP Franz Lustig's striking widescreen visuals.

 

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