David Zellner, Nathan Zellner
USA 2017

Titelheldin Penelope ist keine sprichwörtliche „damsel in distress“, sie wurde keineswegs von einem Hinterwäldler in den Wilden Westen verschleppt – die Rettungsmission des tumben Toren Samuel Alabaster, der an ihre Liebe glaubt, ist mithin vergeblich: Weder hat sie ihn vermisst, noch will sie ihn. Des hoffnungsfrohen Bräutigams entgeistertes Gesicht, als er diese bittere Pille zu schlucken hat, ist nah an herzzerreißend; der turbulenten Ereignisse Ende ist damit freilich lang noch nicht erreicht. Mit DAMSEL fügen die Zellner Bros. dem exklusiven Subgenre der Westernkomödie eine Variante hinzu, in der die Topoi der Klassiker auf ihre Gegenwartstauglichkeit hin abgeklopft werden. (Alexandra Seitz)


A likably offbeat combination of western, comedy and romance, DAMSEL delights in upending audience expectations at every turn. The early stretches promise a larkish but heartfelt love-story as besotted young fop Samuel Alabaster travels across the 19th century Old West to meet his bride-to-be Penelope, with a miniature horse named Butterscotch and the “preacher” he’s brought along to perform the marriage ceremony. But when the supposed “lovebirds” finally meet up, all manner of hell very quickly breaks loose. Written and directed by co-star Zellner with his brother Nathan (who also pops up in an outrageously over-the-top supporting role), DAMSEL is the third feature from the fraternal duo following KID-THING (2012) and KUMIKO THE TREASURE HUNTER (2014). These idiosyncratic and darkly amusing films have steadily accumulated something of a world-wide cult following, and DAMSEL – which premiered at Sundance before competing for the Golden Bear at the Berlinale – is already well on the way to the same status. Magnificent outdoor locations do their best to steal the show from the ultra-game cast, while music by The Octopus Project works neo-country wonders with banjo, guitar, (yee-haw) saw, fiddle and flute. (Neil Young)

  • Robert Pattinson - Samuel
  • Mia Wasikowska - Penelope
  • Nathan Zellner - Rufus Cornell
  • Robert Forster - alter Priester
  • David Zellner - Parson Henry
  • David Zellner
  • Nathan Zellner
  • Adam Stone
  • Melba Robichaux
  • The Octopus Project
  • Scott Kuzio
  • Terry Anderson
Strophic Productions, Damsel Productions

Great Point Media

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