"War Pony"

‘War Pony’ trailer: Riley Keough and Gina Gammell direct Indigenous drama that won the Camera d’Or at Cannes

Riley Keough made her directorial debut with “War Pony”, which premiered at Cannes in 2022, where it won the Camera d’Or Award for Best Debut Film.

New Emmy nominee “Daisy Jones and the Six” co-directed the drama alongside Gina Gammell from a script both directors co-wrote with Franklin Sioux Bob and Bill Reddy. “War Pony” follows the intertwining stories of two young Lakota men on the Pine Ridge Reservation as they face a world built against them and walk unique paths to manhood.

At 23, Bill (Jojo Bapteise Whiting) just wants to make something of himself. Whether it’s delivering goods or raising poodles, he’s determined to make his way towards the ‘American Dream’. Meanwhile, 12-year-old Matho (LaDainian Crazy Thunder) can’t wait to be a man. Desperate for his young father’s approval, a series of impulsive decisions turn Matho’s life upside down and he finds himself unprepared to face the harsh realities of the adult world.

Robert Stover and Stanley Good Voice Elk also star.

“Daisy Jones and the Six” actress Keough first connected with co-writers Reddy and Bob while filming Andrea Arnold’s road odyssey “American Honey” in 2015. “War Pony” is produced by co-directors Gammell and Keough, who IndieWire has Kate Erbland called “talented budding filmmakers.”

“Audiences who choose to see ‘War Pony’ probably won’t ignore the ways the American government mistreated this country’s original inhabitants, and Keough and Gammell don’t hammer the story,” Erbland wrote. “Instead, we see how weak the rez economy is through Bill’s attempts to get a job (there aren’t many) and Matho’s lackluster time at school (well-meaning teachers abound, but none seem particularly inspired) . The one character who seems somehow connected with the traditions of the tribe, a classmate that Matho takes a liking to, also seems to be the most well-adjusted.

In addition to Gammell and Keough, “War Pony” is produced by Willi White, Ryan Zacarias, Bert Hamelinck and Sacha Ben Harroche.

“War Pony” premieres July 28 in select theaters and on VOD from Momentum Pictures. Check out the trailer below.