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Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Tuesday Review - Cowboys and Aliens

Welcome to our new Tuesday series, Tuesday Reviews.  We welcome Evanston Writers Workshop member reviews on whatever books we are reading as well as movies and television we're watching, plays, food, concerts, travel, you name it.  To kick us off, I thought we might take a peek at the new film, Cowboys and Aliens.

In some of the promo, Daniel Craig seemed awfully thin.  He sure wasn't in the movie:  he was buff, rough, and tough enough to take on an alien invasion.

Except, it takes place over a hundred years ago!

Cool idea, really.  Directed by Jon Favreau, of Iron Man fame, it delivers all the boom and clash that we've come to expect from a big-budget Hollywood movie.  What it also does, though, is a credible recreation of the time complete with ruthless cattleman, played by Harrison Ford (who is amazingly spry for a man his age!), and an almost-love-interest played by Olivia Wilde.

I say "almost" because Daniel Craig is in love with another woman.  Wilde, it turns out, is there to revenge her family.  Their chemistry is palpable, and you find yourself rooting for them during the action, but Favreau doesn't take the easy way out and shove them together.  Their relationship develops organically and very plausibly for the characters.

A performance by Noah Ringer of one of the children in the town is a highlight of the show.  You may remember him from The Last Airbender.

Another personal favorite, Clancy Brown, puts in an appearance.  He looks completely different than he did as the Kurgan in the first Highlander movie.

All in all, I found this a very well-done film.  Yes, it has all the explosions and cool Hollywood effects that one would expect; but the storyline is solid and the characters compelling.  And the ending...

Well, that would be telling.

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