The Last Ride
This speculative road trip follows the last days of Hank Williams, which are spent in a powder blue Cadillac convertible. The 1952 El Dorado represents Williams’ success as a songwriter and country singer, but it also serves as his refuge from an increasingly chaotic life. Director Harry Thomason, a television veteran making his feature film debut, finds the raucous and contemplative Williams (Henry Thomas) fully at home in the back seat, alternately taunting and engaging driver Silas Combs (Jesse James), a guileless Montgomery, Alabama mechanic hired to chauffeur him to gigs in West Virginia and Ohio. The former child actors (E.T. and As Good as It Gets, respectively) fully embody these hardscrabble young men adrift in a rural America seized by cold. Thomas doesn’t possess Williams’ gaunt angularity, but he’s a reckless charmer, using a white Stetson to express what his stiff, pain-wracked body can’t. In The Last Ride, he’s just another guy on the lost highway.
Review by Serena Donadoni
Released on June 22, 2012
Originally appeared in Indiewire.