Cowboys & Aliens - Movie Review

A lone cowboy (Daniel Craig) wakes up wounded in the desert having no memory of how he got there or why he is wearing a strange metal band that he can't take off. He stumbles into the nearest town of Absolution where he quickly makes enemies of Colonel Dolarhyde (Harrison Ford)'s son Percy (Paul Dano) and is recognized as the wanted outlaw Jake Lonergan. Before he could be shipped off to be tried in the city, strange flying planes come out of nowhere causing mayhem and abducting townspeople. Jake's suddenly bracelet activates and he is able to shoot down one of the marauders. Now Jake carries the only hope for the townspeople and he must band together with Dolarhyde and his men and with the help of the mysterious traveler Ella, launch a rescue mission and uncover his past along the way.

The title says it all. You get some cowboys and some aliens and you'll see cowboys fighting aliens. The end. That really is just it for the whole two hours. In theory you'd think a genre mash-up like this would be cool. It is, but it suffers from bad writing and a silly random plot. It started promising but the plot just went spiraling like one of the airships that Jake shoots down. Could have been great but falls short of expectations. I really wish there was more story development especially around Ella and Jake as well. Ella just seemed to be put in as eye-candy. Of course she does have a significant role in the movie...but it is primarily eye-candy and to stare at Jake creepily. Some of her lines are just horrible...honestly, who writes this stuff?! The movie also suffers from a disappointing ending.

Despite all its faults, Cowboys & Aliens was fun to watch. Daniel Craig makes such a better cowboy than he does James Bond. There is action and lots of explosions. And more explosions. Did I mention explosions? The aliens themselves where quite interesting anatomically. It's not a horror movie so you see how the alien looks like half way into the film; maybe even earlier. So if you're the type that can overlook the absurd plot and is just there for the action (and perhaps to see Olivia Wilde ;P) then you'll like this movie. For others, my advice is to just run with it and don't ask questions, you might enjoy it but no guarantees.

Cowboys & Aliens opens in theatres July 29, 2011.

Warning: there are what I consider spoilers in the trailer.

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