It is as if the makers of the film The Last Ashes (Läif a Séil) made a list of which elements should be included to create a box office hit and made sure that each was incorporated into the plot.
Beautiful young female protagonist—check.
All the villains are men—check.
The worst villain is a murderous cult leader who convinces his followers that only he can protect them—check.
The heroine seeks righteous revenge—check.
The heroine has spent time with Native Americans and learned their values and techniques—check.
The cavalry comes to the rescue—check.
The heroine achieves her revenge by committing gory and shocking murders—check.
Perfect for box office success, but for one problem: the film is in Luxembourgish with subtitles.
It is 1839. Twelve-year-old Hélène (Giusi Carenza), like all pre-pubescent girls under the control of cult leader Graff, his sons and his flunkies, is forced to wear an ugly mask. Her parents ask permission to leave the Graff domain and are allowed to leave. But they don’t get far before they are murdered in front of Hélène’s eyes. Hélène runs away. Eventually, we learn, she was sold to white Americans and kidnapped by Native Americans, who adopted her and applied to her face their tribal tattoos.
Fifteen years later, now going by the name Oona (Sophie Mousel), Hélène reappears near the Graff village. At first no one realizes that Oona is Hélène grown up. She is known only as The Stranger. But little by little, Oona reveals her true identity to her friends and even her enemies.
Presumably producer Claude Waringo and director and co-writer Loïc Tanson can still achieve box office success with The Last Ashes by creating a dubbed version or selling the remake rights to someone in Hollywood.