Of the many directorial debuts premiering at Sundance Film Festival earlier this year, one of the most impressive was Julian Higgins’ neo-western thriller God’s Country. Starring Thandiwe Newton as a professor in a rural town in the American West, she starts to fight back against racial prejudice in her work and trespassers on her property. Ahead of a September 16 release from IFC Films, the first trailer has now arrived.

Jake Kring-Schreifels said in his review, “A few thrillers have premiered at this year’s Sundance Film Festival that feature vulnerable and underestimated women, but none of them carry the quiet, enigmatic power of Thandiwe Newton in God’s Country, a frigid neo-western that moves glacially but thoughtfully through topics of class, race, and gender. As Sandra, a college professor living alone with her dog in the vast Montana wilderness, Newton exudes a gravitational force, carrying a stern and inscrutable countenance that her character will eventually use to her advantage in an ongoing dispute with two white men. In a pocket of the country that feels lawless and bitterly divided, Sandra is unafraid to begin a vindictive war of escalation, even if it means stripping away everything important in her life.”

See the trailer below.

God’s Country opens on September 16.

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