The Harder They Fall is a 2021 American Western film directed by Jeymes Samuel and co-written by Boaz Yakin. Jonathan Majors, Idris Elba, Zazie Beetz, Regina King, Delroy Lindo, Lakeith Stanfield, RJ Cyler, Danielle Deadwyler, Edi Gathegi, and Deon Cole appear in the film. It is one of the few Westerns where the prominent cast members are all black. Its characters are loosely based on real cowboys, law enforcement officers, and outlaws from the American West of the nineteenth century. The Harder They Fall premiered on October 6, 2021, at the BFI London Film Festival. It had a limited release on October 22, 2021, before becoming available on Netflix on November 3. The film’s ensemble cast and Samuel’s direction and score generally received positive reviews.
The Plot of the Movie: The Harder They Fall
Nat Love, 11, is at dinner with his parents when Rufus Buck and his associate Cortez arrive. Buck shoots Nat’s parents before carving a cross into his forehead. Love tracks down and murders Cortez twenty years later. Meanwhile, his associates, sharpshooter Bill Pickett and quickdraw Jim Beckwourth ambush the Crimson Hood gang and steal their loot from a recent bank robbery. The lone survivor informs them that the $25,000 they stole belongs to Buck. Love travels to see his former lover Mary Fields, who owns a salon chain. Pickett declares Love of the heist. Buck’s gang, led by Trudy Smith and Cherokee Bill, kidnaps Buck from a train leaving Yuma Territorial Prison.
Jonathan Majors and Idris Elba:
Jonathan Majors, one of the most exciting young stars on the rise, recently joined the Marvel Cinematic as Kang the Conqueror with a brief cameo in Loki’s finale. Nat Love, Majors’ character, leads a more merciful band of outlaws who form a shaky alliance. The feeling was based on the same-named real-life ex-slave turned cowboy. Idris Elba, one of the best actors working today, has given a wide range of performances since his breakout role on The Wire. He plays Rufus Buck, a real-life criminal who led a gang of mercenaries in the Arkansas-Oklahoma Indian Territory in the 1890s. Buck’s brutality is on display from the start of The Harder They Fall.
Zazie Beetz and Regina King:
Zazie Beetz, one of Atlanta’s many breakout stars, has transitioned to film with a string of excellent recent performances. In The Harder They Fall, she plays Stagecoach Mary, a saloon owner who joins Nat’s group as they hunt down The Buck gang. One Night in Miami, her critically acclaimed directorial debut. Regina King returns triumphantly to the big screen as the real-life outlaw “Treacherous Trudy.” While Trudy was not a member of the Buck gang, she was based on a real-life convicted killer named Gertrude Smith. Trudy breaks out of prison and joins his pursuit to take back their homeland of Redwood in the film.
Delroy Lindo and Lakeith Stanfield:
Delroy Lindo received some of the best reviews of his career last year for his performance in Da Bloods, for which he was infamously overlooked for an Oscar nomination. Lindo’s impressive resume continues with his portrayal of Bass Reeves, the first Black marshal in the western United States territories. Reeves enlists Love’s gang to help him retake Redwood from the Buck gang. Lakeith Stanfield is a great character actor of his generation who manages to do something new with each role. As the real criminal is known as “Cherokee Bill,” distinguished for his half-African, half-Cherokee ancestry, he takes on one of the most overt venom roles of his career. Cherokee Bill is a quick-witted, smooth-talking murderer.
RJ Cyler and Danielle Deadwyler:
RJ Cyler has accrued a remarkable filmography at an early age and more than garners the chance to enter The Harder They Fall’s stacked cast. While the honest Jim was an escaped enslaved person who became a legendary mountain man, he is portrayed in the film as a sharpshooting gunslinger and Nat’s closest friend. Jim’s bravado occasionally gets the group in trouble, but he balances his assurance with quick problem-solving skills. Danielle is a highly successful stage performer who has made her way to the screen with roles in several high-profile television projects. Like the real, Cuffee disguises herself as a man, but her military experience isn’t explored in The Harder They Fall. She is portrayed as Mary’s love interest.
The original working title for the film was The Notorious Nine. Jonathan Majors was cast to star in the movie, which was announced in July 2019. Jeymes Samuel, a musician, co-wrote and directed the film. Idris Elba would join in November, and Jay-Z, who would produce the film, would compose original music for it. Zazie Beetz, Lakeith Stanfield, Delroy Lindo, and Regina King will be among the new cast members added to the film by September 2020. Filming was supposed to start in 2020 in Santa Fe, New Mexico, but it was pushed back due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Filming began in September 2020 but was halted on October 15 due to a positive COVID-19 test from a background actor.