The Magnificent 7

The remake of the 1960 of the same title that was a remake of the 1954 film titled Seven Samurai. This western directed by Antoine Fuqua has the star-studded cast that would grab anyone’s attention. A group of gunslingers led by Sam Chisolm (Denzel Washington) and Joshua Farraday (Chris Pratt) are recruited by a woman whose town has been taken over by a ruthless business industrialist Bartholomew Bogue and his band of cowboys. They are terribly out number but thanks to their creativity and sharpshooting ability they are able to defeat Bogue and give Rose Creek back to the people.

The Bad

Western movies are filled with cliches. The makers of The Magnificent 7 did a decent job breaking away from a lot of those cliches but they could avoid all of them. Most of them aren’t really worth mentioning but the one I noticed most was that someone in the group got scared and left. When Goodnight Robicheaux (Ethan Hawke) leaves I’m guessing just about everyone in the theater probably thought to themselves “He is gonna comeback and save the day”. It’s been used so many times that it didn’t have much dramatic effect.

When are movies going to stop modeling all their female leads the same way just because the Hunger Games was a relatively successful franchise? Haley Bennett, is a beautiful and decent actress in her own right, yet it seemed to me that they just tried to make her character, Emma Cullen, into a poor man’s Katniss Everdeen. No points for originality in regards to her character.

(SPOILER) Unfortunately, a lot of really like-able characters don’t make it through the last fight. This can easily leave someone with a bit of a sour taste in their mouth (which is why I’m including it with “The Bad”. However, If everyone would’ve have gotten out alive then I would’ve questioned the realism in that and still included it with “The Bad”. So take this critique with a grain of salt.

Lastly, the villain was a total coward. I realize that is exactly how they wanted to make him look but I am personally a fan of strong and scary antagonist characters. Bogue was honestly a (pardon my french) big weenie.

The Good

I really enjoyed the characters in this film. Every important character had was sufficiently complex and developed so that they were all very different from each other. I wish that some of the characters had a bit more background but since there are so many important characters, I realize that background on all of them would’ve shot the run-time through the roof. I especially loved that each of the 7 had there own little trade-mark (with the exception of Vazquez). Farraday was a magician and always had his cards, Billy (Byung-hun Lee) was a spectacular knife fighter, Goodnight was the most accurate shot around with a rifle in his hands, Red Harvest (Martin Sensmeier) was a skilled Indian warrior and great with a bow, Jack Horne (Vincent D’Onofrio) was a big and strong man that was very religious and prayed often throughout the movie, and finally Sam Chisolm was the righteous leader of the group and a ridiculously fast/accurate shot with a pistol.

Another thing that I loved about the film was it’s ability to be very funny without making anyone think that I is another stupid western comedy (i.e. The Ridiculous 6). It was pretty realistic for the most part which is always a good thing in action movies.

With all the killing in the movie I never really felt like it was too much. It is relatively gore-less killing, unlike that of The Revenant, which is what made it so easy to watching without feeling like the was an obnoxious amount of deaths.

The Rating

This is the first western that I have genuinely liked in a long time, and for that reason it is going to get a very solid rating. It was a solid movie that I would consider a must-watch for teens and up that consider themselves fans of action movies.

4/5

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