I wrote a feature for Film Divider on the old fashioned way that new Western The Salvation represents women, and how the genre needs to change.
There was a time, in the 1950s and 60s, when Westerns were as ubiquitous in cinema as superhero films are today, when the only capes being worn were ponchos. Today, the genre plays a much smaller role in Hollywood, the big budget attempts, such as The Lone Ranger or Cowboys vs Aliens, flopping famously while occasionally filmmakers of a more artistic bent will make something to please critics but not broad audiences like, perhaps, The Assassination of Jesse James.
A straightforward, no nonsense Western is a rarity, and so when a film like The Salvation turns up, its simplicity can be its most effective surprise. The plot of this film is simple: a man named Jon (Mads Mikkelsen) exacts revenge on some men who raped and killed his wife, which gets him on the wrong side of the heavies who have been oppressing his dusty old town.
Growling and violence ensue.