Ride With the Devil

( 13 )

Overview

A complex tale of uneasy alliances and hostilities along the Kansas/Missouri border during the Civil War, Ride with the Devil opens in 1862. The story concerns Jack Bull Chiles Skeet Ulrich, a proud son of the South ready to fight for the Confederate cause after his father is killed by Yankee troops. Chiles's friend, Jake Roedel Tobey Maguire, joins the Bushwhackers, a group of renegade Southerners aligned with the Confederate Army, even though his family supports the Union cause - which sets him head-to-head ...
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Overview

A complex tale of uneasy alliances and hostilities along the Kansas/Missouri border during the Civil War, Ride with the Devil opens in 1862. The story concerns Jack Bull Chiles Skeet Ulrich, a proud son of the South ready to fight for the Confederate cause after his father is killed by Yankee troops. Chiles's friend, Jake Roedel Tobey Maguire, joins the Bushwhackers, a group of renegade Southerners aligned with the Confederate Army, even though his family supports the Union cause - which sets him head-to-head with his father. The two young men, used to the slow pace and gracious lifestyle of the South's privileged class, become guerilla fighters and wander through the countryside together, encountering sudden, shocking and extreme acts of violence. Their comrades include valiant leader Black John James Caviezel, paranoid madman Pitt Jonathan Rhys Myers, gentleman George Simon Baker, and Daniel Jeffrey Wright, a laconic former slave who unexpectedly fighs for the south despite his race out of sheer loyalty to George - though the others regard him with suspicion. The Bushwhackers hide out in a shed near the home of Sue Lee Shelley singer/songwriter/poet Jewel, a pregnant widow whose husband was killed three weeks after their marriage. Later, following a shocking and unexpected act of violence, a number of the men team up with the crazed Quantrill John Ales to stage an attack on an abolitionist stronghold, but Jake finds his moral conscience growing more acute, and takes the first steps toward romancing and starting a family with Sue Lee in what looks to be a very different post-Civil War future. Adapted from the novel Woe to Live On by Daniel Woodrell, Ride with the Devil was directed by Ang Lee, whose previous project was a very different look at America's past, the 1970s domestic drama The Ice Storm 1997.
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Special Features

Two audio commentaries one featuring Lee and producer-screenwriter James Schamus and one featuring Elmes, sound designer Drew Kunin, and production designer Mark Friedberg; New video interview with star Jeffrey Wright; Plus: A booklet featuring essays by critic Godfrey Cheshire and Edward E. Leslie, author of the Devil Knows How to Ride: the true story of William Clarke Quantrill and his Confederate Raiders
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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Gregory Baird
After brilliantly recreating the 1970s in the The Ice Storm, director Ang Lee and writer/producer James Schamus delve deeper into American history with this violent, visually striking Civil War drama. Tobey Maguire stars as a young man who comes of age fighting for the South in the bloody guerilla war waged on the Missouri/Kansas border. Ride With The Devil sidesteps any overt politics, focusing instead on the vigilante ethos and male bonding of the freewheeling band of hotheaded state patriots known as "bushwhackers." As he begins to question the cause for which they are fighting, the ever-sensitive Maguire emerges as the group's conscience. Strong performances by Skeet Ulrich, Simon Baker, Jonathan Rhys-Meyers, and James Caviezel as brothers in arms play well against Maguire's boyish charm, and Jeffrey Wright smolders with quiet charisma as the sole black bushwhacker. Male energy abounds here, nicely offset by pop star Jewel in her screen debut. As the war widow who captures Ulrich's heart, the comely poet and singer bares more than her soul.
All Movie Guide - Josh Ralske
Ang Lee's Ride With the Devil is a morally complex Civil War Western with flashes of brilliance. Unlike Lee's subsequent film, Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, the genius of this film is found not in the action sequences -- which are appropriately chaotic and bloody -- but in the moments of quiet drama, wherein the characters and their disparate motivations are discovered. This is a film, after all, in which the heroes are bushwhackers, murderous guerilla fighters for the Confederate cause. At its core, it's a film about two young men, Jake Roedel (Tobey Maguire) and Daniel Holt (Jeffrey Wright), who fight out of loyalty to their aggrieved friends, and who discover what they truly believe in as they witness the ravages of war and the hopeless brutality of fighting for ideals that are already obsolete. Jake is a pensive young man whose German family is on the Union side, while Holt is a former slave whose freedom was bought by George Clyde (Simon Baker), the man he now fights beside. Lee, as usual, gets strong performances from his cast. The film drags occasionally, but is at its strongest in quiet moments: the hush that comes over the bushwhackers as Jake reads an intercepted letter from a Union soldier's mother, or the dinner table conversation between Jake, Jack Bull (Skeet Ulrich), and Mr. Evans (Zach Grenier), a Southern gentleman who calmly explains why the Confederacy will lose the war. The script, by Lee's frequent collaborator James Schamus, does an excellent job of contrasting the thoughtful openness of Holt, Jake, and Sue Lee (Jewel) -- a slave, a foreigner, and a woman who finds a way to see past their own oppression, poverty, and personal loss -- with the burned out, despairing rage of characters like Pitt Mackeson (Jonathan Rhys-Meyers) and Black John (James Caviezel).
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 4/27/2010
  • UPC: 715515055116
  • Original Release: 1999
  • Rating:

  • Source: Criterion
  • Region Code: 1
  • Presentation: Special Edition / Wide Screen
  • Time: 2:28:00
  • Format: DVD
  • Sales rank: 1,167

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Skeet Ulrich Jack Bull Chiles
Tobey Maguire Jake Roedel
Jewel Sue Lee Shelley
Jeffrey Wright Daniel Holt
Simon Baker George Clyde
Jonathan Rhys Meyers Pitt Mackeson
James Caviezel Black John
Tom Guiry Riley Crawford
Tom Wilkinson Orton Brown
Jonathan Brandis Cave Wyatt
Matthew Faber Turner Rawls
Stephen Mailer Babe Hudspeth
John Ales Quantrill
Zach Grenier Mr. Evans
Margo Martindale Wilma Brown
Mark Ruffalo Alf Bowden
Celia Weston Mrs.Clark
Technical Credits
Ang Lee Director
Marit Allen Costumes/Costume Designer
Steve Arnold Art Director
Anne Carey Associate Producer
Stephanie Carroll Set Decoration/Design
Robert F. Colesberry Producer
Mychael Danna Score Composer
Frederick Elmes Camera Operator
Mark Friedberg Production Designer
Ted Hope Producer
Robert Huberman Asst. Director
Avy Kaufman Casting
Drew Kunin Sound/Sound Designer
Steve Lauberth Set Decoration/Design
David Linde Executive Producer
James Schamus Producer, Screenwriter
Jonathan Scott Set Decoration/Design
Tim Squyres Editor
Alex Steyermark Musical Direction/Supervision
Philip Stockton Sound Editor
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Scene Index

Disc #1 -- Ride with the Devil
1. Wedding Celebration [7:44]
2. "Jayhawkers, Jake" [1:46]
3. One Year Later [5:07]
4. Southern Hospitality [5:22]
5. "Do You Kill Women?" [6:56]
6. Sparing Alf Bowden [7:59]
7. A Mother's Letter [3:16]
8. Winter Hibernation [4:57]
9. Sue Lee Shelley [6:46]
10. Dinner at the Evanses' [4:39]
11. A Brother's Letter [3:21]
12. One Hour [5:35]
13. "It's the Evans Place" [5:01]
14. "That Arm Done For" [9:51]
15. The Brown Farm [3:30]
16. Night Camp [1:27]
17. William Quantrill and the March to Lawrence [3:15]
18. The Lawrence Massacre [4:26]
19. "Let's Get Us Some Eggs" [5:36]
20. Border Battle [7:17]
21. Back to the Brown Farm [5:06]
22. Freedom [10:24]
23. A Shotgun, a Preacher, and a Roasting Chicken [3:12]
24. Wedding Night [6:35]
25. "Want Some Chicory?" [3:54]
26. Daniel Holt and Jake Roedel [8:52]
27. End Credits [2:12]
28. Color Bars [4:24]
1. Director's Cut [7:44]
2. Father Figure [1:46]
3. Guerrilla Warfare [5:07]
4. A Restored Scene [5:22]
5. First Action Scenes [6:56]
6. Mark Ruffalo [7:59]
7. Civil War Letters [3:16]
8. Boot Camp [4:57]
9. Jewel [6:46]
10. Globalization [4:39]
11. Jake and Holt [3:21]
12. Subtexts [5:35]
13. Music [5:01]
14. Extreme Subtlety [9:51]
15. Dr. Zhivago [3:30]
16. Ang's Interest in the Story [1:27]
17. Quantrill [3:15]
18. The Reenactors Take Pattonsburg [4:26]
19. Historical Detail [5:36]
20. James Caviezel [7:17]
21. Domestic and Very Quiet [5:06]
22. Jeffrey Wright [10:24]
23. A Neglected Film [3:12]
24. A Neglected Film, Continued [6:35]
25. The Politics of the Film [3:54]
26. Now It's a Western [8:52]
27. (No Commentary) [2:12]
28. Color Bars [4:24]
1. The Border War [7:44]
2. Boys in the Woods [1:46]
3. Gangs [5:07]
4. Building the Farmhouse [5:22]
5. The Sound Space [6:56]
6. Camp Scene [7:59]
7. Pitt Mackeson [3:16]
8. The Dugout Set [4:57]
9. Jewel [6:46]
10. The Evans Place [4:39]
11. Lighting Holt [3:21]
12. Period Detail [5:35]
13. Action Mode [5:01]
14. Battlefield Medicine [9:51]
15. The Brown Farm Set [3:30]
16. Going Into Kansas [1:27]
17. The Reenactors [3:15]
18. Pattonsburg, Missouri [4:26]
19. The Lawrence Set [5:36]
20. Second-Unit Battle [7:17]
21. Test Screenings [5:06]
22. Moonlit Night [10:24]
23. Ang's Attention to Detail [3:12]
24. The Film's Budget [6:35]
25. Jonathan Rhys Meyers [3:54]
26. The Final Location [8:52]
27. (No Commentary) [2:12]
28. Color Bars [4:24]
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Menu

Disc #1 -- Ride with the Devil
   Play
   Chapters
   Commentaries
      Ang Lee and James Schamus Commentary
         Ang Lee and James Schamus Commentary: On
         Ang Lee and James Schamus Commentary: Off
         
      Index
      Frederick Elmes, Drew Kunin, and Mark Friedberg
         Frederick Elmes, Drew Kunin, And Mark Friedberg Commentary
            Frederick Elmes, Drew Kunin, And Mark Friedberg Commentary: On
            Frederick Elmes, Drew Kunin, And Mark Friedberg Commentary: Off
      Index
   Jeffrey Wright
      Play
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 13 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(8)

4 Star

(3)

3 Star

(1)

2 Star

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1 Star

(1)

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Sort by: Showing all of 13 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Subtly Brilliant

    My Film and History class watched this in relation to our theme of the Civil War. I've always enjoyed Tobey Maguire's movies and was excited to watch this. It was much more than I had expected. It covers an aspect of the war that a lot of us had never known about. And while being informative, it was also extraordinarily intriguing. The performances of everyone in the cast were great and Jewel was surprisingly excellent. I was skeptical about her presence in the movie, even though I love her music, but she was able to hold her own against Tobey Maguire and Skeet Ulrich. I heartily recommend this movie.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    An underrated Masterpiece

    ''Ride With The Devil'' is a winner all the way around. The film deals with a piece of american history rarley touched on in film,The Kansas/Missouri Border War. RWTD contains some superb perfomances. Skeet Ulrich and Tobey Maguire gives the best performances of the careers as two childhood friends who become Missouri raiders. The tour-de-force performance goes to Jeffery Wright as a ex-slave who rides and fight with the band of confederates. Wright gives a well drawn and powerful perfomance. Also, James Caviezel and Jewel turn in a good perfomances in their supporting roles. The production is first rate. Ang Lee direction is flawless. RWTD contains some the best action sequences ever filmed. A classic.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    One of the Best Civil War movies

    This movie is awesome. The relationship between Holt and Jake is really good and how they crossed the lines to become friends. It has action, humor, love and loss. Very real depiction of what the times were most likely like. Tobey Maguire is excellent in his role.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Excellent Film

    Is Probably the greatest Civil War Film I have seen. It is disturbing and very realstic. Truley a movie to see.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Wonderful Movie

    I cannot say how pleased I was with this movie. The cast was mostly unknown to me. This freed me from watching a ''star'' perform, and free to actually concentrate on the film. This film had so many ''twists and turns'', was historicaly correct.........and well plotted. Realistic and easy to follow from beginning to end, it kept me glued to my chair. I own the VHS and must have the DVD

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Ride With The Devil - well worth your time and money

    =======================
    WARNING: PLOT GIVEAWAYS
    =======================

    I first saw this movie (late night channel flicking) on cable TV, and was hooked. Every time it has been re-run, I watch it again.

    It's a very understated, nonetheless enthralling, movie without the usual distraction of 'big-name' movie stars.

    There are a lot of beautifully filmed lush landscapes. The linchpin of the plot, and of the movie, is Quantrell's Lawrence Raid - probably the most historically accurate depiction of this event ever filmed.

    Strongly recommended for anyone with an interest in the Missouri/Kansas border conflicts during the Civil War.

    Not recommended for anyone with an interest in blood-and-gore cowboy/outlaw movies.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Terry-Civil War History Buff 3/17/04

    This movie is actually sort of a prequel to another very fine Western,'The Long Riders',in that it shows in detail what helped form some of the west's most famous outlaws.The cast is excellent to a person, the firearms are true to the time period and the costumes are very authentic. The only thing I couldn't figure out is where a band of outlaws living in the forest came up with so many costume changes.This is a minor criticism because anyone like myself who is into re-enact or Cowboy Western Shooting can get some great ideas for costumes from this film. This is a very enjoyable historic drama,not very well known but finely acted, directed and extremely well written.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 29, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted July 15, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted August 5, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted July 19, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted February 7, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted January 15, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 13 Customer Reviews