Parents' Guide to

Bone Tomahawk

By Jeffrey Anderson, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 18+

Unusual Western has torture and extreme gore.

Movie NR 2015 132 minutes
Bone Tomahawk Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this movie.

Community Reviews

age 17+

Based on 8 parent reviews

age 18+

Gory, brutal, unflinching but very good.

Very cool and very unusual film - it manages to both be a Sergio Leone western and a Eli Roth horror, and incredibly pulls both off. The gore in this film is brief but extremely intense - perhaps that's why it's so shocking; it's sudden, and escalates like a missile and then it's over. I would not recommend this film to any child, whatsoever, but very much worth watching as an adult. Just be prepared. Gore-wise, there's a number of fingers, hands and head (singular) cut off, but this is done extremely briefly, in good daylight with little preceding menace - not much worse that you'd find in a Tarantino produced exploitation film. Two scenes amps the horror factor, one by execution, another by implication: As others have mentioned, an unflinching scalping transitions into a brutal death, with little camera cuts. It is short, however. Another scene, near the end, have the protagonists walk by two pregnant women who have been blinded and amputated. While not gory, the horror factor is real and reminiscent of scenes in The Road. That said, the acting is superb, the story builds like a true journey into the heart of darkness. Worth a watch, for sure, just be ready.
1 person found this helpful.
age 17+

violent, but touching western

great movie, but a very disturbing scene (someone cut in half alive, after being scalped).

This title has:

Great role models
Too much violence

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (8 ):
Kids say (7 ):

A debut feature by S. Craig Zahler, this feels like a potential cult favorite; it's strange and disturbing but also imaginative and surprising. It displays a rare, impressive amount of patience. Although it's a long 132 minutes, BONE TOMAHAWK's greatest strength is its pacing. No moment feels wasted, and every moment is an opportunity for greater richness of character, or to ponder the situation's rights and wrongs. The playful dialogue often takes advantage of this (listen for one monologue about a flea circus!).

Zahler has a gift for the unexpected and manages to get in many sudden twists. But he doesn't shy away from intense moments of pain and suffering; Arthur's injured leg in particular causes many wince-inducing sequences. Also, the evil natives are painted as monsters without much chance to seem human; it's a white, Western, outsiders' view of "the other." Bone Tomahawk definitely isn't for fans of the mainstream, but for the adventurous, it's worth a look.

Movie Details

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