A 1999 Western drama directed by Ang Lee, based on the novel Woe to Live On by Daniel Woodrell. It follows two friends, Jake Roedel (Tobey Maguire) and Jack Bull Chiles (Skeet Ulrich), as they fight with Quantrill's band of raiders during the American Civil War.
Provides examples of:
- And This Is For......: Right before they attack Lawrence, Quantrill makes a rousing speech to the men, telling them to remember their female relatives who died in the collapse of a Kansas City jail. "To Lawrence!"
- Attack! Attack! Attack!: Both sides during the retreat from Lawrence.
- Ax-Crazy: Black John, after he learns of the death of his sisters.
- Big Bad: The Jayhawkers or Quantrill and company, based on whose side you're on.
- Black Best Friend / Token Minority: Holt, George Clyde's freed slave. Woe to anyone who insults Holt in front of Clyde.
- Expy: Black John is based on the historical "Bloody Bill" Anderson and Pitt is based on "Little Archie" Clements. Anderson rode with Quantrill until the deaths of his sisters, after which he became a blood thirsty pyschopath who killed anyone in union blue. Archie was The Dragon who obeyed Anderson's every order. Some of their atrocities could be considered Nightmare Fuel: decapitating a soldier, cutting his genitalia off, stuffing it in his mouth, and then arranging the corpse so it's sitting up holding it's own head. All this in front of a troop of soldiers about to executed.
- Gory Discretion Shot: Jack Bull's leg amputation
- One Steve Limit: Averted with the two main characters.
- Shotgun Wedding
- Someone to Remember Him By: Jack Bull's daughter with Sue Lee.