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Winter in the Blood

HD   Unrated Closed Captioning

Alex Smith & Andrew J. Smith

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About the Movie

Winter in the Blood is a hauntingly beautiful film that is true to the lyrical and unflinching spirit of James Welch’s classic 1974 novel of Native American life. Virgil First Raise (Chaske Spencer, the Twilight trilogy) wakes in a ditch on the hardscrabble plains of Montana. He stumbles home to his ranch on the reservation only to learn that his wife, Agnes (Julia Jones), has left him. Worse, she's stolen his beloved rifle. Virgil sets out to find her, beginning an odyssey of inebriated intrigues with a mysterious “Airplane Man” (David Morse, The Green Mile), a beautiful barmaid, and two dangerous Men in Suits. His quixotic, modern-day vision quest moves Virgil ever closer to oblivion— until he discovers a long-hidden truth about his identity. But is it too late? Shot in the badlands of Montana, directors Alex and Andrew Smith (The Slaughter Rule) have crafted a gorgeous heartbreaker of a movie, a revisionist Western where the Indians are the Cowboys— set to a high lonesome soundtrack by Heartless Bastards that includes new songs by Robert Plant, Black Prairie and Cass McCombs.

Rotten Tomatoes Movie Reviews


  • Reviews Counted: 11
  • Fresh: 7
  • Rotten: 4
  • Average Rating: 6.1/10

Top Critics' Reviews

Fresh: The journey from page to screen may have battered Mr. Welch's novel, but its lamenting heart beats loud and clear. – Jeannette Catsoulis, New York Times, Aug 20, 2014

Fresh: The story captures a slipstream of memory and regret, interweaving past and present and what might be happening in Virgil's mind as he reflects on lost family and lost chances. – Mark Olsen, Los Angeles Times, Oct 30, 2014

Rotten: Winter in the Blood turns out to be the wrong kind of heartbreaker. – Alan Scherstuhl, Village Voice, Aug 19, 2014

Fresh: "Winter in the Blood" portrays an often overlooked modern Native American life, and via the prose of James Welch, the film takes an unflinching and realistic look at some of the troubles that this community. – Katie Walsh, The Playlist, Aug 23, 2014

Read More About This Movie On Rotten Tomatoes

Customer Reviews

Its not horrible, but its not good.

I rented this hoping for an good western style movie, this movie is definitely not that. Its really slow and does not really have a story. i would not suggest this to anybody looking to watch a movie with a straightforward story. the acting was good, and visually movie not bad, but unless you have a good story, it just fails and this movie definitely failed.

read the book

I loved the book and was looking forward to this movie, but it’s not worth watching. It’s incredibly hard to follow, as it jumps back and forth in time and characters and the attempts at quirkiness are just confusing instead of being funny. I wasn’t able to watch the whole thing.

Winter in the Blood
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  • $14.99
  • Genre: Drama
  • Released: 2014

Customer Ratings