Red Rock West (1993)
This sub-genre, by many called neo-noir, had a big resurgence during the 1990s, and John Dahl was one of the forerunners before Quentin Tarantino hijacked the trend and created more or less his own sub-genre. Seen in retrospect, this largely unsuccessful film underlines both the appeal and the shortcomings of the 90s neo-noirs with its often playful turn of events, but just as often caricatured characters and situations. Red Rock West has got a star-studded cast consisting of a balding Nicolas Cage, a wildly overacting Dennis Hopper, a Lara Flynn Boyle trying to be seductive and seasoned, and the always dependable J. T. Walsh whose character is ultimately underdeveloped. It is during the film's early parts, when Walsh and Cage first meet, that Red Rock West comes closest to being that vibrant, intense movie Dahl arguably wanted to make. By the final third, it has all mostly become a messy spectacle run by a hyperactive Hopper.