As I mentioned in the last post, there seems to be a new fad in mixing genres. I have no trouble visualizing a group of movie producers sitting around a table and saying, “Lets do a movie where we mix the Wild West and Alien invasion.” Why not? Why wouldn’t aliens be just as likely to arrive on Earth during the Cowboys and Indians era of history? -Or during the time of the Roman Empire, for that matter.
“Cowboys and Aliens” pits gold hungry, wife kidnapping, slimy aliens against a dusty western town, an Apache Indian tribe and a band of outlaws. Yes, it is a bit contrived and yes, it is a bit cliche, but generally it all works. The movie genuinely captures the feeling of an old west film, complete with gritty characters, one of which just happens to have a mysterious, alien blasting bracelet attached to his wrist. Lots of things blow up. Lots of slime and blood.
In order to enjoy the film you do have to suspend your critical faculties a bit. I wasn’t sure why a weapon bracelet just conveniently attached itself to the hero’s wrist. Iwasn’t sure why people were collected, only to be gathered in a small room to watch a bright light. I wasn’t sure why the aliens were so easy to beat, clearly having a few technoligical advantages over the cowboys. I’m all for an underdog movie, but this underdog just didn’t seem to have what it would really take. That part of the plot could have been done a lot better.
So “Cowboys and Aliens” is a flawed movie, but is still a fun ride. I would give this movie a B.
The next genre mixer? “WARHORSE”. Let’s make a war movie to entice the male, action loving audience, but throw in a horsie story to attract those horse loving teenage girls.