Saturday, August 6, 2011

Film Fest - Cowboys and Aliens

This up-date of the great American Western feels like a Western. Cowboys and Aliens sidesteps all the cheese-potential of its title to give us a stand-up, straight-shooting classic frontier tale that just happens to have an alien scout ship as the evil territorial invader.

I thought it was really well plotted, touching on many classic western tropes and character types, as well as some science fiction tradition, but the film managed still to surprise me a couple times: I won't spoil it, but in one memorable scene the movie-world gets a sharp twist to the right that delighted me.  Daniel Craig makes a great Clint Eastwood style nameless outlaw and Harrison Ford has finally found his late career groove with this over-powerful rancher character.

I really liked Cowboys and Aliens.  Between this and True Grit, the modern Western is alive and doin' jus fine, Ma'am.
A cowboy, Sturgis, Dakota Territory, 1887. Photo by J.C.H. Grabill. Public domain.

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