A stranger comes to town with a mysterious past. He’s looking for someone, a Japanese farmer named Komoko, but no one will tell him anything; it’s clear the name brings up dark memories. Some details about him come out: he’s a veteran of World War II, which had recently ended; he’s there to deliver a medal to the father of someone who died saving his life; and he can do karate.
It might seem odd to group The Homesman and The East together for consideration. The first is a solid but somewhat frustrating Western, with a feminist edge. The second is an embarassingly broad, largely contemptible genre picture about cartoonish, dumpster-diving eco-terrorists that consistently rings false.