I have always loved western movies, since I was a child (inherited passion like that for beautiful music), I have always been fascinated and kidnapped the stories of sheriffs and outlaws, Native Americans and great landscapes that are the background. Immense, breathtaking landscapes that are as protagonists as the people of these stories, inaccessible mountains, forests and endless deserts. Here imagine one of these westerns written by a skillful pen like Craig Johnson’s and set in one of the lands closest to Yellowstone Park, Absaroka County in Wyoming and you’ll have a literary masterpiece, unfortunately almost not translated into italian (only one of the twelve that make up the series). Inspired by Johnson’s novels, here is one of the most intense, successful and exciting TV series I have ever seen : Longmire. 6 seasons consisting of 63 episodes aired from 2012 to 2017 (2013-2018 for Italy). The story in question is a sort of forerunner (also in the setting as well as for the story) of the new series that has as its protagonist Kevin Costner and that is Yellowstone. Same locations in practice, tense stories between natives and white men, but this series released in 2012 is more oriented towards crime and crime fiction than the familiar plots of the new Costner western. The story is exciting and traces the story of the Absaroka County Sheriff, Walt Longmire, to whom the australian actor Robert Taylor gives a perfect characterization. Arrived at 50 years of age at the first real opportunity as a protagonist, gives a capital performance in addition to the right phisique du role, even facial expressions make the feelings of the silent and upright sheriff perfectly.
A man with a big heart who is revealed to have killed his wife for the events related to the construction of a large casino within the Cheyenne Reserve bordering the County to which the woman had opposed with all his might. She will never be seen even for a posthumous cameo but her spiritual presence will be important for much of the series. Series that risked cancellation after the first 3 seasons by the A&E, despite a success of listening exceptional, for the request to make the stories more dark and gloomy than the original. Taken over by the colossus Netflix, it proceeded to the conclusion of the story with three other seasons. They are not very long seasons but the episodes are long and the stories really well developed, It starts from the resolution of the various cases of murder that occur while in the background unfold the stories of characters that gradually take the proscenium and are in turn protagonists of the stories. It goes to Deputy Sheriff Victoria Moretti, who has the lending physique of blonde actress Katee Sackhoff, an ex-cop who came to Wyoming from Philadelphia and secretly (but not even so) secretly in love with Walt. There is the best friend of the Sheriff and Native American Henry Standing Bear, played by the great Lou Diamond Phillips, owner of a bar and true reference for the natives of the reserve. Man with an immense heart who will be involved in spite of himself in tragic and dramatic events but will always remain at the side of the sheriff who in turn must defend himself from false accusations just for his integrity way of handling the law. There is the sheriff’s lawyer daughter, Cady, who has the beautiful face of Cassidy Freeman, “trapped” initially in Absaroka to be close to the widowed father but then also involved and protagonist of stories that will put a strain on the relationship between the two. Great importance will have the character of the owner of the casino and reference for the native community, Jacob Night Horse, played by another great actor and namely A Martinez, will be the target of the investigation of the sheriff but often also his involuntary ally but in spite of everything you will become attached to a man who tries with all his might to help his ill-treated people.
So many characters, and I skipped several, but all characterized in a perfect way, the dialogues never over the top and even the silences are as important as the words and in these the chosen actors are masters of expressiveness. What about the landscapes? Here’s what you’ll see is not Wyoming but for most of the episodes is New Mexico and also part of Nevada and Arizona, but the stunning beauty of the places is part of this story and is never secondary. Little inhabited lands, unspoiled nature, immense and desolate streets, small villages of working people and the Sheriff’s office that is the reference of all, even more than the mayor. I also loved the soundtrack, chosen wisely and also in this the similarities with Yellowstone are clear even if in the latter the quality of the pieces chosen is even higher. A series to discover if you love crime novels, thrillers with a police background but also a sprinkling of westerns and stories of strong feelings, love and family. Trust me you will fall in love and you will wonder why someone has not yet thought of a seventh season…but hope as they say is the last to die.
(you can find italian version of this article in the blog at this link : https://trexroads.altervista.org/longmire-un-western-moderno-fra-sceriffi-nativi-americani-e-i-monti-del-wyoming/ )