Despite a 7-Minute Standing Ovation, Kevin Costner Struggles to Find Funds for Third ‘Horizon’ Movie as Critics Have Mixed Feelings

Despite a 7-Minute Standing Ovation, Kevin Costner Struggles to Find Funds for Third 'Horizon' Movie as Critics Have Mixed Feelings
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Aside from being one of the biggest cinema events in the year, the Cannes Film Festival is also a big market where filmmakers pitch their projects to potential buyers and where many deals are made. We have already reported on the endeavors – some successful, some not (yet) – of the filmmakers in Cannes to find distributors (e.g. Megalopolis or The Monkey), and we are now going to discuss yet another story from the film festival, related to a movie we have already reported on.

Kevin Costner is one of the most recognizable names in the movie industry, and while has starred in numerous movies, including The Untouchables, JKF, The Bodyguard, and others, the filmmaker really likes the Western genre. He starred in Wyatt Earp, directed and starred in Dances with Wolves, which earned him two Oscars, and starred in the western series Hatfields & McCoys and Yellowstone, and he is currently working on a four-part movie series, Horizon: An American Saga, whose first part premiered in Cannes and… well… the reception seems to be lukewarm at best.

And while Costner has definitely proven his worth as a filmmaker and as an actor, not all of his projects were well received. Dances with Wolves was a hit, whereas The Postman was absolutely panned. Horizon is similar to both movies, in a way, but it seems that the reception is leaning more towards the one The Postman got than the other way.

We can confirm that the film did receive a 7-minute standing ovation in Cannes, but much like it was the case with Coppola’s Megalopolis, no one is really satisfied with the movie and the ovation seems to be more a display of respect, rather than admiration. The early reviews are in, and although their number is still small at this point, we don’t think that things will change drastically once more reviews are in.

On Rotten Tomatoes, the movie currently has a horrible “Rotten” rating with just one out of five positive reviews (20%, but the number is not really referent), while Metacritic gives the movie a mid-tier 50/100 rating based on nine reviews, most of which were mixed. Based on what the critics said, there are several major issues with the movie.

The first is the overly long runtime, which is something that Costner likes, but he has had issues with it before (just remember The Postman). The second thing is the story, which has been described as both chaotic in terms of focus (as it stands, there is no clear point to the movie as a whole), but also slow and uneventful, not to say boring. Sure, the critics did say that the whole concept should probably be reevaluated once all the films are (potentially) made, but as a standalone movie, Horizon Chapter 1 offers very little. The acting was also criticized, and overall, there were some critics who called for a reevaluation of The Postman after seeing Horizon. And that says much.

Another issue that has been stressed out is the issue of the Indigenous peoples, which is related to the topic of the movie, which shows the expansion to the West. The critics noted that Costner did not succeed – although he did try to do it – in presenting the two opposing perspectives and that the Indigenous peoples’ side of the same story was underrepresented in the first part. Costner was actually asked about this, and this is what he said:

I’m conscious of race. I live in a place called Compton, Calif. I funded a movie called ‘Black or White. It was my version of a level of racism that exists in our country. The movie is a journey. It’s not a plot movie, and the Native Americans are represented. I don’t feel the need to try to balance the story. I just try to make it as real as I can.

Source: Variety

We will definitely get a better understanding of the situation once more reviews are in, especially when the fans get to have their say next month, which is when the movie is going to be released in theaters. In the meantime, though, Costner is definitely going to have an uphill battle to find funding for the third and fourth movies of his saga. He has invested a lot of his own money in making Horizon, but the studios are not that enthusiastic and the future of the saga is uncertain, as Costner cannot find the funds for the third and fourth movies. Here is what he said:

I don’t know why it was so hard. You saw the movie. I don’t know why it was so hard to get people to believe in the movie that I wanted to make. You know, I don’t think my movie is better than anybody else’s movie, but I don’t think anybody else’s movie is better than mine. I don’t go out into the world with something I don’t think is good. I’ve knocked on every boat in Cannes to help me. ‘Oh come, we’ll have a picture.’ No, come get your checkbook out. Let’s talk money!

Source: Variety

It would be a shame if the project remains unfinished, so we’re rooting for Costner here and we hope that he will be able to deliver the whole story to us, because only then will we be able to properly evaluate the quality of the work as a whole. Until then, we are going to keep you up-to-date with all the news and updates related to the saga, so be sure to keep following us for all the latest information about Kevin Costner’s passion project and its future.

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