Friday, July 29, 2011

Don't Cowboy Up

In a recent interview with Entertainment Weekly magazine, the creators and cast of Cowboys & Aliens explained that to them, the whole joke of the movie was in the title, so they consciously decided to play the rest of it straight and serious. (Actually, they say it was producer Ron Howard's idea not to make the film like a western version of Men in Black.) Big mistake. This action film, about an alien invasion in the late 1800s, is so serious that it's not very fun.

Cowboys & Aliens had all the makings of a good-time summer flick. Aside from its title, it stars James Bond and Indiana Jones, it was directed by Jon Favreau, and it was written by the guys behind Star Trek and Lost. But unfortunately, Harrison Ford just ain't the star he used to be; that cranky, cantakerous act of his gets old here in a hurry. Daniel Craig fares a little better, but the script doesn't really make you care all that much for the plight of his character. And, well, the movie just kinda wastes the rest of the cast too, by not giving them the chance to loosen up and make light of the concept of an unexplainable attack from above (the characters never once use the word "aliens," instead calling their invaders "demons").

As a result, Cowboys & Aliens is a real disappointment. That's why I'm only giving it a C.



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