Best new Western movies (2017) - Top Netflix & Cinema

Whoever thinks that the Western is long dead, is terribly wrong. Indeed, the genre is more alive than it has been for decades. It is no longer only Clint Eastwood who runs the game, it has become a genre with many new players, and with many new innovative plays on the genre. Comedies have realized the potential of the almost silly seriousness of these tough cowboys, and even horror filmmakers see opportunities for scary stuff taking place in the dusty Wild West. But we mainly see an increase in modern & slick genre films that feel like old-fashioned Westerns with shoot-outs and saloons, but feel undeniably new, and are perhaps a little bloodier and more violent (The Hateful Eight, Brimstone). From Tarantino to the Coen Brothers, we picked the very best neo-westerns of the last couple of years.
The Vore's Film staff selects the top best western movies of 2017 in cinema, DVD and Netflix. Are Tommy Lee Jones, Quentin Tarantino & Martin Koolhoven our new western genre directors? The main focus is on international art house & American and British indie cinema.

In the 2010's, the Golden Days of the Western Film have long been gone. Back in the days, certain directors were specialized in making them, most notable John Ford, Sergio Leone and Sam Peckinpah. You don’t find this kind of highly specialized directors anymore. At its best, a modern Western film in 2014 is something a director, for once in his career, gives a shot at; a style exercise so to say. There’s often a strong hint of irony in these films. Everyone’s familiar with the archetypes of the genre, so let’s just blend in as many of these elements and then we’ll have nice piece of pastiche cinema!

In 1950 Hollywood produced over a 130 Western films. In 1960 not even 30. The film genre’s popularity decreased, which was largely the result of the rise of the Western TV series like Bonanza, Rawhide, Gunsmoke and The Rifle Man. They kept the audiences away from the cinemas and glued to their tubes. The genre as people knew it became worn out. Then Revisionist Western film makers like Sam Peckinpah and Alejandro Jodorowsky revitalized the genre. Their films didn’t just depict the white men as good and the Indians as evil and challenged the genre’s fixed aesthetics, to put it bluntly.

Some say the Western Film has been dead for quite some time now. That is not true, although, admittedly, pretty much of what happens today is indeed retro and pastiche. Or postmodern if you wish, that obnoxious, inevitable term. Well, what follows are the best Westerns of the 2010’s according to us.

western movies2017
Popular actorsGuy Pearce, Dakota Fanning & Kit Harington
Trending moviesThe Salvation, The Revenant & Slow West

Anticipated 2017 western movies to watch

    Hostiles (Saturday July 1, 2017)

    Hostiles film poster Director
    Scott Cooper
    Rosamund Pike
    Christian Bale
    Ben Foster

    In 1892, a legendary Army captain reluctantly agrees to escort a Cheyenne chief and his family through dangerous territory....Read more

    Brimstone (Wednesday March 1, 2017)

    Brimstone film poster Director
    Martin Koolhoven
    Dakota Fanning
    Kit Harington
    Carice van Houten

    Dutch director Martin Koolhoven worked seven years on what should be his dream come true and magnum opus; the epic, sprawling and violent Western flick 'Brimstone'. And it surely doesn't disappoint. Guy Pierce is astonishing as 'The Reverend', a devilish religious fanatic determined to hunt down innocent Liz, a young prairie woman. Westerns seldom get darker than thins one. ...Read more

Best western movies on Netflix or DVD in 2017 & 2016

2010's best rated western movies out on DVD, Bluray or streaming on VOD (Netflix, Amazon).

    Django Unchained (Tuesday December 25, 2012)

    Django Unchained film poster Director
    Quentin Tarantino
    Jamie Foxx
    Christoph Waltz
    Leonardo DiCaprio

    The word ‘pastiche’ almost seems to be invented for Quentin Tarantino’s films. Known as a cinephile extraordinaire, he pays homage to dozens of genres, films and directors within his work. But that doesn’t say it’s only a gimmick. Django Unchained is his first proper Western, although many of his earlier films borrowed a fair amount of the genres’ features. (Remember Inglorious Basterds’ brilliant opening scene?) The story is simple. Django is a former slave determined to revenge his former owners and to free his enslaved girlfriend. He’s helped by a peculiar bounty hunter named Dr. King Schultz, which is another magnificent (and Academy Award winning role) by Christopher Waltz. Well, it’s not too hard to imagine what great things Tarantino can create with these ingredients....Read more

    The Revenant (Friday January 8, 2016)

    The Revenant film poster Director
    Alejandro G. Iñárritu
    Leonardo DiCaprio
    Tom Hardy
    Will Poulter

    If you are looking for a truly immersive Wild West experience, than The Revenant delivers just that. The dreamy always moving cinematography, the amazing landscape, and the raw acting of the likes of Tom Hardy bring those times back to life. The story and film itself are actually quite meager, but that is not what it's about. It's an unique movie experience from the makers of Gravity. ...Read more

    Hell or High Water (Friday August 26, 2016)

    Hell or High Water film poster Director
    David Mackenzie
    Chris Pine
    Ben Foster
    Jeff Bridges

    Starring Jeff Daniels (who else) as a soon-to-be-retired grumpy sheriff chasing two bank-robbing brothers through Texas, 'Hell or High Water' is a truly triumphant modern Western. Atmospheric, thrilling and darkly comic at times. An absolute must-see.
    ...Read more

    Das Finstere Tal (Thursday March 13, 2014)

    Das Finstere Tal film poster Director
    Andreas Prochaska
    Sam Riley
    Tobias Moretti
    Paula Beer

    Arrival of a solitary strangers in the high villages situated in Alps stirs ambiguity and suspicion in the hearts of locals as...Read more

    The Magnificent Seven (Friday September 23, 2016)

    The Magnificent Seven film poster Director
    Antoine Fuqua
    Denzel Washington
    Chris Pratt
    Ethan Hawke

    This highly anticipated remake of the 1960 classic 'The Magnificent Seven' (which itself was a remake of Kurosawa's brilliant 'Seven Sumarai') slightly disappointed when we first saw it. But all the same, it's a very solid, entertaining and well-crafted western.
    ...Read more

    The Salvation (Friday February 27, 2015)

    The Salvation film poster Director
    Kristian Levring
    Mads Mikkelsen
    Eva Green
    Eric Cantona

    Mads Mikkelsen is a peaceful Danish settler who unleashes the anger of a mean gang leader after he kills the murderer of his wife and children. Mads Mikkelsen is always great....Read more

    The Homesman (Sunday May 18, 2014)

    The Homesman film poster Director
    Tommy Lee Jones
    Tommy Lee Jones
    Hilary Swank
    Grace Gummer

    In 2005 actor-turned-director Tommy Lee Jones surprised friend and foe with the surprisingly strong neo-Western The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada. The genre suits Jones, so to say, as The Homesman is one of the most interesting films of 2014, and the definitely the best western of 2014 I’ve seen so far. Hillary Swank, in an impressive lead, is Mary Bee Cuddy, a somewhat quaint young unmarried woman who takes the task of escorting three mentally ill women through the vast and dangerous plains to the nearest asylum. Jones himself plays an opportunistic claim jumper who accompanies Marry Bee after a weird twist of faith. The Homesman is stunningly shot and succeeds wonderfully at shifting between hilarious, dark comedy and truly gripping drama. Tommy Lee Jones established himself as one of Hollywood’s most interesting directors with this outstanding feature film....Read more

    Jauja (Saturday December 27, 2014)

    Jauja film poster Director
    Lisandro Alonso
    Viggo Mortensen
    Ghita Nørby
    Viilbjørk Malling Agger

    A captivating tale that depicts a Father's desperate search for his daughter as he ventures into an unknown desert in the...Read more

western genre statistics

Rank#13 (List of most popular genres)
ActorsGuy Pearce, Dakota Fanning & Kit Harington
TrendingThe Salvation, The Revenant & Slow West
Amount of genre films per year from 2010 to 2017

86 western movies scheduled for release this year.

In bleaker times we tend to look at even bleaker times. And the Wild West, although adventurous and full of opportunity was also pretty grim. In the 2010's gritty drama's set in the badlands have increased, as well as old fashioned gun movies. 2017 appears to be another good year with a number new a-list cast films coming out.

List of highest grossers of the decade & budget

True Grit is probably one of the reasons why the genre is coming back in style. It netted $171M at the US Box Office with just $38M as budget.
TitleBox officeBudget
The Revenant (2015)$183M$135M
True Grit (2010)$171M$38M
Django Unchained (2012)$163M$100M
Rango (2011)$123M$135M
Cowboys & Aliens (2011)$100M$163M