Saturday, November 8, 2014

A Millions Ways to Die in the West review

So I will readily admit, the only reason this movie initially interested me was because of a bustle joke in the preview. I've seen movies that poke fun at history and figured that's what this would be. History is cool, but the occasional joke about it is fun, right? Right?

A Million Days to Die in the West is more like a million ways to have to suffer through bad Seth McFarlene jokes.

The movie opened with potential. You have the typical Bad Outlaw, played by Liam Neeson, and his gang of thugs out to harass the locals. Charlize Theron is Anna, the unwilling sidekick who isn't exactly keen on the outlaw life.

Ten minutes later, McFarlane - as Albert - walks on screen and everything quickly deteriorates from there. When writing the script, it seems that his already shallow bag of working jokes suddenly ran off and all he was left to pull from were the same three things. F-bombs abound, and all McFarlane can seem to focus on are the bathroom and penises.
"See this? This is my brain. I used it to try and write a screenplay and failed miserably."
Neil Patrick Harris and Amanda Seyfried provide support as the Girl Who Left the Main Guy and the Guy She Went to Instead, but even their characters do little to beyond providing additional outlets for McFarlane's poorly written screenplay.

The writing itself is far from decent when it comes to mocking history. At one point, Albert starts spewing off a bunch of modern day terms and his drinking partners stare at him stupidly. Because, yeah, no one in 1882 has a grasp of what you're trying to interject in here.

Even the bustle joke turned out to be a bit of a downer. As Albert tries to figure out Anna's large backside, she pulls it up to reveal something that looks more like a medieval torture device and it quickly delves into a joke about oversize hinnys.
"Is that really your real butt?"
It becomes obvious that even the writers (including McFarlane) have no idea what they're doing, when Albert looks at Anna in her dress (a semi-decent interpretation I might add, but still years off from 1882) and goes, "It looks like Jane Austen vomited on you."

Probably the one standout moment is during a flashback to Albert's high school days when Abraham Lincoln shows up as the guest speaker. He opens his mouth and the next thing you know, it's Gilbert Gottfried. It isn't the Abe Lincoln you expect, but one of the characters even says, "I don't think that's the real Lincoln," but that's what makes it even more funny.
"I'll give you $1 to shoot everything. $10 if you shoot this movie into oblivion."
Usually I try to do a costume review, but I found even these to be very lacking (outside of the okay bustle dress). Again, no research, so just whatever looked good on the actors seemed to be pulled from the wardrobe and fit with the movie.

Although I wasn't expecting much to begin with, the fact that the movie had zero redeeming qualities made it a complete two-hour waste. Oh wait, I did get yesterday's blog post up, so not quite.

Overall rating - 1 out of 5 (only for Gottfriend's performance as Abe Lincoln)
Costumes - 0.5 out of 5 (and only for the plaid dress)

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