Kevin Costner's new movie debuts with low Rotten Tomatoes rating

kevin costner in horizon an american saga
Kevin Costner's new movie gets brutal RT ratingWarner Bros.

Kevin Costner's Horizon: An American Saga - Chapter 1 has been poorly received by critics after premiering at Cannes Film Festival.

Looking at its current 27% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, the starring director's plan to release three more epic stories in this Western universe could well come crashing down.

"Families, friends and foes discover the lure of the Old West as the Civil War divides the country," reads the movie's official synopsis, with Sienna Miller, Sam Worthington, Jena Malone and Michael Rooker also in its ensemble cast.

kevin costner in horizon an american saga
Warner Bros.

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Here is what some of the critics had to say:

Total Film

"Running at three hours, Chapter 1 is as unhurried as they come. It takes considerable relish in establishing characters who, in some cases at least, have much more story to tell. Among those that intrigue are Sam Worthington's dashing United States Army First Lt. Trent Gephardt, for whom romance blossoms as the film progresses.

"Further texture comes courtesy of sturdy turns from such stalwarts as Danny Huston, Will Patton, and Michael Rooker. Meanwhile, the due attention paid to the Indigenous characters is hopefully a sign of more to come."


"Credit where credit is due, Kevin Costner has made what is essentially a three-hour prologue into something that is occasionally moderately entertaining. However, just as often, Horizon: An American Saga - Chapter 1 woefully wanders every which way. Some bits can be intriguing in isolation, both lightly complicating and revelling in the mythos of classic Westerns, though the result as a whole is simply far too scattered to hold together."

horizon an american saga official trailer
Warner Bros.

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"As a standalone film (which it isn't, but let's pretend for a moment), Horizon is by turns convoluted, ambitious, intriguing, and meandering. But it's never quite moving. It's too busy laying down narrative tracks and hammering out the minutiae of situations that don't feel like they're leading anywhere special."


"Horizon is shot handsomely with a capital H by J. Michael Muro with the aspect ratio and camera placement of a high-budget television series. Which, along with the movie's clumsy episodic structure, leads you to believe that Costner may have been trying to out-Taylor Sheridan Taylor Sheridan.

"Costner's vainglorious efforts in crafting a sincere Western opus he poured much of his own money into are commendable mainly for what he's put on the line here. But Horizon makes even that other $100-million-plus vanity project at Cannes – Francis Ford Coppola's Megalopolis – look like a work of uninhibited genius by comparison."

Horizon: An American Saga – Chapter 1 comes to cinemas on June 28, while Chapter 2 will follow on August 16.

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