Cowboys & Aliens (15)

Film

Westerns

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Time Out rating:

<strong>Rating: </strong><span class='lf-avgRating'>2</span>/5

User ratings:

<strong>Rating: </strong><span class='lf-avgRating'>3</span>/5
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Time Out says

Tue Aug 16 2011

‘Iron Man’ director Jon Favreau’s latest actioner needs no introduction other than the title – and that’s one of the best things going for it. The idea of aliens descending on a dusty Wild West town has widespread popcorn appeal and, with a heavy sprinkling of big name actors, ‘Cowboys & Aliens’ gets off to a promising start.

Daniel Craig plays the strong, silent cowboy who wakes in the New Mexico desert with no memory and a chunky metal bracelet on his arm – the first clue to an impending alien invasion. It’s soon clear he can remember how to fight, however, as he rides into the nearest town and humiliates Percy Dolarhyde (Paul Dano), the arrogant drunken son of big-shot cattleman Woodrow (Harrison Ford). But Woodrow and our hero must team up when an alien spaceship swoops in, plucking up victims and prompting a disparate band of cowboys, Native Americans and mysterious strangers to track it through the wilderness.

It’s here the pace starts to falter. Characters are undercooked, with only a potential romance (Craig and Olivia Wilde) and a surrogate-son routine (Ford and Adam Beach) offering emotional engagement. The aliens themselves have little personality, and their appearance is all too derivative (think slimy grey skin and ‘Alien’-style inner jaws). But the biggest problem is a lack of humour: while Craig looks every inch the cowboy and handles gruff action well, Robert Downey Jr he ain’t.

A handful of funnies simply isn’t enough in a film that should have been handled with B-movie glee rather than pompous plod. With slick action and effects, ‘Cowboys & Aliens’ is a good-looking movie that passes muster as a visual diversion. But once the gang saddle up, what started as ‘True Grit’-meets-’War of the Worlds’ ends up closer to – whisper it – ‘Wild Wild West’.
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Release details

Rated:

15

UK release:

Fri Aug 12, 2011

Duration:

96 mins

Users say

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<strong>Rating: </strong><span class='lf-avgRating'>0</span>/5
LiveReviews|18
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Mike

Can only agree with anna smith,she just about covers it all.But I did enjoy watching it,not the best film in the world but certainly not the worst

Mike

Can only agree with anna smith,she just about covers it all.But I did enjoy watching it,not the best film in the world but certainly not the worst

akhila

I kind of agree with the above review but I think it was more entertaining than she suggested.It was good but you do get the feeling that it could or should have been better.What could have been a quirky B movie ends up a bit pedestrian and slightly mainstream.Worth checking out if your in the mood though.

akhila

I kind of agree with the above review but I think it was more entertaining than she suggested.It was good but you do get the feeling that it could or should have been better.What could have been a quirky B movie ends up a bit pedestrian and slightly mainstream.Worth checking out if your in the mood though.

scotty

great humour,great dialogue,fantastic acting and really original Alien story (for once)--i loved it,,dont get critics sometimes,wonder if I'm easy pleased,,, if you like popcorn with a superior brittish actor stepping in to all american actioner-alongside a cinema legend-with a female lead who is simply stunning looking... then you will enjoy...

scotty

great humour,great dialogue,fantastic acting and really original Alien story (for once)--i loved it,,dont get critics sometimes,wonder if I'm easy pleased,,, if you like popcorn with a superior brittish actor stepping in to all american actioner-alongside a cinema legend-with a female lead who is simply stunning looking... then you will enjoy...

DutchMovieLover

For a very wet summer afternoon (we are currently having the wettest summer in Dutch history since 1906 and according to the local media movie attendances in the Netherlands are up 20% this august when compared to august 2010!!!) this film is OK. I especially enjoyed the pairing up of Daniel Craig en Harrison Ford (in Indiana Jones mode!)!!!

DutchMovieLover

For a very wet summer afternoon (we are currently having the wettest summer in Dutch history since 1906 and according to the local media movie attendances in the Netherlands are up 20% this august when compared to august 2010!!!) this film is OK. I especially enjoyed the pairing up of Daniel Craig en Harrison Ford (in Indiana Jones mode!)!!!

violetta

A cowboy wakes up in a semi-desert with a lump of metal on his wrist - he can't remember who he is and where he's been. For some reason a trio of low life's turn up - that ends badly. Our cowboy makes his way into town and is witness to a spoilt brat kicking the townsfolk around cos his daddy is a wealthy cattle rancher. Cows get blown up and alien ships swoop over the dusty ol' town. Dragging peeps off with cable grabs - something like fairground mini cranes but more effective. A few other bits and bobs occur then an alien ship is found - a bunch of cowboys and a crowd of native Indians sort that out - that's about it I think; although I may have dozed off once or twice.

violetta

A cowboy wakes up in a semi-desert with a lump of metal on his wrist - he can't remember who he is and where he's been. For some reason a trio of low life's turn up - that ends badly. Our cowboy makes his way into town and is witness to a spoilt brat kicking the townsfolk around cos his daddy is a wealthy cattle rancher. Cows get blown up and alien ships swoop over the dusty ol' town. Dragging peeps off with cable grabs - something like fairground mini cranes but more effective. A few other bits and bobs occur then an alien ship is found - a bunch of cowboys and a crowd of native Indians sort that out - that's about it I think; although I may have dozed off once or twice.

Marsellus

A great cast is wasted on a lazy script. There just isn't anything really interesting happening here. A distinct lack of humour is also a major problem. The banter between Craig and Ford should have been as witty as the dialogue Ford and Connery shared in the 3rd Indy movie. Instead, the lifeless script only makes you think of ways the movie could have been better. This is a 2 star film but I'll give it an extra star just for the cast. That Olivia woman is hot! Also, nice to see Shane from The Shield pop up as a random outlaw! And Sam Rockwell is one of the best actors in Hollywood so I'll watch him in anything.

Marsellus

A great cast is wasted on a lazy script. There just isn't anything really interesting happening here. A distinct lack of humour is also a major problem. The banter between Craig and Ford should have been as witty as the dialogue Ford and Connery shared in the 3rd Indy movie. Instead, the lifeless script only makes you think of ways the movie could have been better. This is a 2 star film but I'll give it an extra star just for the cast. That Olivia woman is hot! Also, nice to see Shane from The Shield pop up as a random outlaw! And Sam Rockwell is one of the best actors in Hollywood so I'll watch him in anything.

Evelyn

The movie never explained why they needed the gold, or why they were probing on humans. It would have been nice to elaborate on the girls previous life and how she got to earth. A nice ending for Craig would have been nice too - - - after all he did allot to save the world and its gold. Aside of that, the western scenes were great. Just not enough explaniations throughout the movie.

Evelyn

The movie never explained why they needed the gold, or why they were probing on humans. It would have been nice to elaborate on the girls previous life and how she got to earth. A nice ending for Craig would have been nice too - - - after all he did allot to save the world and its gold. Aside of that, the western scenes were great. Just not enough explaniations throughout the movie.

scrumpyjack

Good, balanced review from Anna Smith. Id like to see you do more T.O. reviews for mass appeal stuff like this. Agree other than the 2*, id go 3 as I was entertained from start o finish though, BEWARE....the aliens in the light are rubbish and in the dark too menacing for under tens on the big screen (from much experience, 12a's are view as fun for all the family, this certainly isn't) also, the running time SHOULD be around what you state but is actually around 2 hours. 6/10

scrumpyjack

Good, balanced review from Anna Smith. Id like to see you do more T.O. reviews for mass appeal stuff like this. Agree other than the 2*, id go 3 as I was entertained from start o finish though, BEWARE....the aliens in the light are rubbish and in the dark too menacing for under tens on the big screen (from much experience, 12a's are view as fun for all the family, this certainly isn't) also, the running time SHOULD be around what you state but is actually around 2 hours. 6/10