By Ben Hooper.
Saddle up in the ol’ pick-up truck for a romantic ride across the Lone Star state, y’all.
Don’t be fooled by Terrence Malick’s name in the credits (as an executive producer), this has made-for-TV melodrama through it like Brighton through rock.
In this quasi-Oedipal tale set in smalltown Texas, a young mother (Breann Johnson) takes an abandoned and abused boy into her family, much to the chagrin of her gruff and drunken husband (Luke Perry). Fast forward ten years and the boy is now six foot of Southern chivalry and a six pack – attracting the laser-guided gaze of every desperate housewife and denim-shorted girl in the state. But there’s only one true love for him…
What follows is a saga of family drama and soft-focus romance, with many a Mills & Boon moment, including the time the topless farmhand builds a fence while the farmer’s daughter looks on, longing for a roll-around in the hay barn.
It’s an old-fashioned story that someone like Jeff Nichols (Mud) might actually have worked their cinematic magic on. But sappy country tunes, slow dissolves and lacklustre direction leave Red Wings more like a substandard Nicholas Sparks effort.
Bill Paxton turns up for five minutes halfway through to add a touch of class and credibility, but by then it’s already game over, man, game over.
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