It’s exciting to see Shyamalan on such confident footing once more, all these years later.
There is a list of people whose deaths remain "unresolved." Jimmy Hoffa. Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. Judge Crater. Amelia Earhart. B. Traven. They all must be dead by now anyway, but we have a need for closure. Such cases also provide an excellent inspiration for movies.
The test of these movies is simple enough: If they were about fictional people, would they be worth seeing? Sometimes the answer is yes, as in several tales about the alleged later life of Sherlock Holmes. I know, I know, he was never alive in the first place, but give me a break here. In the case of Butch and the Kid, how many people had even heard of them before the 1969 movie? In it there was the possibility that they escaped to Bolivia, and that's where "Blackthorn" joins Butch in old age, circa 1928.
Played by Sam Shepard, who may be the most photogenic of modern playwrights, he inhabits an isolated horse ranch in a severe landscape and shares the company of the comely Yana (Magaly Solier). But memories of past glory fill him with thoughts about a return to America, where a son may live, who would be his child with Etta Place — or with the Kid, if you follow me.
He cashes in all his money and sets off across the Bolivian vastness on horseback, where he's waylaid by Eduardo (Eduardo Noriega) a mining engineer. Butch's net worth was stashed in the saddlebags of his horse, which runs away, making him rather hard to steal from. Butch knows that this Eduardo may have stolen the fortune of a local millionaire, and Eduardo leads him on what is possibly a wild goose chase down into the abandoned mine where it's perhaps hidden.