I expected absolutely nothing from this movie. I expected to walk out 20 minutes in.
Because I hate movies to begin with.
Well, not exactly hate. Movies with me are simply pass/fail. I’m not wired to passively sit 2+ hours in one spot and be amused by whatever I’m shown. When I read, I control the pace. When I do crossword puzzles, my brain and fingers are working. When I play World of Warcraft, I choose my own adventure.
Back to the movie. In the late 1800s, Jake Lonegan (Daniel Craig) finds himself near the town of Absolution with a metal brace around his wrist and no memory. Turns out, aliens have been stalking this two-horse town, abducting residents for the usual battery of crazy medical probing. And something else.
Harrison Ford plays Col. Dolarhyde, a brash and cruel former Civil War Colonel-turned-rich-rancher. Because he’s the richest guy around, his son Percy is a complete tool who bullies the poor residents of Absolution.
Olivia Wilde plays herself in a Western-style dress. Her character’s name is Ella, but make no mistake, she’s Olivia Wilde. She sticks out like a sore thumb. So much so that people in the audience would giggle when she appeared. At least the plot explains away why she’s so … atypical.
Naturally, Lonegan, Dolarhyde, and Olivia Wilde find themselves part of an Absolution-based posse off to find the alien hideout and get their kin back. They call the aliens “demons” which made total sense to me. What would you think if you lived in an era without the concept of space travel?
Here we go: I LIKED THIS MOVIE. They didn’t play it like a cornball spaghetti Western parody. They played it like a Western, and I couldn’t help rooting for this plucky little group to win. Yes, there were a few “huh-what” moments, but again, I wasn’t expecting Henry V. And Daniel Craig wears chaps well, which was a nice counter to the completely-expected Olivia Wilde naked-from-the-back scene.
From WM: “Watching Harrison Ford chew up scenery for two hours is always fun. It was darker than expected, but very akin to Independence Day. ”
And I think that’s why I enjoyed it. You will too, though I probably wouldn’t bring skittish kids. Like WM said, it got pretty dark at times.