COWBOYS & ALIENS Review

 

In a word: Meh.

In the words of my brother: it does exactly what it says in the title.

As I write this I am about fifteen minutes from the end and by the time the movie is finished, I will have started my next post.

Set in 1873, in the Arizona Territory, the movie opens with Jake Lonergan (Daniel Craig), an outlaw, waking up with an injury. He arrives in a small town where a mysterious young woman, Ella (Olivia Wilde), questions him about where he comes from. A brawl breaks out and Jake is knocked unconscious. He wakes up in a prison cell and taken to a horse and cart so he can be brought to the Federal Marshal. Woodrow Dolarhyde (Harrison Ford) arrives with his men to get his son from the sheriff and to finish business with Lonergan, who had stolen gold from him previously. The group notices lights in the sky and, soon, an attack begins on the town, abducting some of the townspeople. The following day, a small group of men (and Ella) take off to search for the abductees.

I’m completely torn about this movie. Part of me wants to get this movie out of my collection. Another part of me thinks this makes a great winter movie: something to watch while the fire burns, the candle burns and the decorations add a little something to the room. Another part of me wondered why the likes of Harrison Ford, Olivia Wilde and Daniel Craig will take part in such a movie. The acting was alright: it wasn’t anything particularly special considering what these people can do. There were some funny moments, but that was based more on looks and nuances than anything else. The story was interesting (not including the sub-plot with Abigail Spencer) but taken that little bit too far towards the end. It was a sub-par movie.

CAST

Daniel Craig Craig plays Jake Lonergan and, as you would expect from a Bond, does a lot of shooting and jumping from ledges and kissing the girls. Jake is an outlaw who lost his girlfriend to the aliens and was himself abducted. He ended up in the town and soon became another prisoner. He wears a bracelet on his wrist which acts as a gun. As a result of his abduction, he can’t remember his past. Craig and Harrison Ford play off each other pretty well as enemies who eventually form a trust.

Harrison Ford plays Woodrow Dolarhyde, a man who Lonergan had stolen gold from before the events of the movie. His son, Percy (Paul Dano), is abducted from the town and accompanying Dolarhyde on the search is a young Indian man whom he took in when he was a boy. As a major Indiana Jones, Star Wars fan, I love him in this movie. As I mentioned above, certain nuances between Craig and Ford made me chuckle.

Olivia Wilde Ella is a mysterious woman Jake encounters in the town She is always trying to get him to remember his past. As much as I love Olivia Wilde, I only liked her character for a little over half the movie altogether. It got to a point where I thought that it was completely unnecessary to make what happened happen. Although, I did enjoy the fact that they didn’t make big romantic sub-plot between Ella and Jake. (Win!)

 So, no. this wasn’t the worst movie, it wasn’t the best movie. It was so and so. I recommend seeing it and deciding on it for yourself.

FUN FACT

Towards the end of the movie, I noticed something: Jake Lonergan (Craig) constantly has his hat with him. When he is in the water he makes sure to catch it and when he comes out of the cave, he grabs it in his hurry. A possible homage to co-star Harrison Ford’s Indiana Jones?

 

 

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