Hostiles, directed by Scott Cooper evokes with beauty and restraint the wild landscapes of a world in which individuals collide with forces beyond their control. Set in the American West of the early 1890s, and based on the original story by Academy Award-winning screenwriter Donald E. Stewart, the film follows the relationship between a cavalry captain Joseph Blocker (Christian Bale), and Yellow Hawk (Wes Studi), a Northern Cheyenne chief held prisoner by Blocker at Fort Berringer, a dismal, dust-blown outpost in New Mexico.
Max Richter’s score combines a haunting stillness and elegiac beauty with a noir-like instensity. Tracks such as the plaintive “A Woman Alone”, recalled and varied throughout, mirror the film’s hard psychological edges and the transformation of conflict and ill-will into compassion and love.
‘…Richter’s brooding score, which seems to seep from the landscape itself as it moves inexorably from grief and torment toward a state of grace.’