While Super Furry Animals' Gruff Rhys has diverted into idiosyncratic documentaries for his film career, The Beta Band's John Maclean has opted for a full-blown Western for his feature debut. Following a couple of shorts, Slow West is actually his third collaboration with Michael Fassbender (Prometheus).
Playing to an enthusiastic reception at The Sundance Film Festival earlier this year, Slow West is an off-kilter take on the genre that still manages to keep the bullets flying while Fassbender chomps an Eastwood inspired cigarillo. Some early viewers have compared it to Jim Jarmusch's Dead Man (1995), while others have said it's more Wes Anderson (The Grand Budapest Hotel).
Whatever, the story involves Kodi Smit-McPhee (Let Me In) journeying across the new American frontier in the late 19th century to find the girl he loves, picking up mysterious "chaperone" Fassbender along the way. Life, it's fair to say, is not peaceful there, in the open air. Whether our hero finds a place where there is so much space remains to be seen.
With Ben Mendelsohn (Killing Them Softly), Rory McCann (Game Of Thrones) and Caren Pistorius (The Most Fun You Can Have Dying) also in the cast, Slow West gets a UK release on 26 June.