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DVD Review

DVD cover

Cowboys & Aliens


Starring: Daniel Craig, Harrison Ford and Olivia Wilde
Paramount Home Entertainment
RRP: £19.99
Certificate: 15
Available 26 December 2011

In the old west, a cowboy awakens with no memory of who he is or anything about his past. Strapped to his wrist is a strange metal bracelet. When he wanders into the local town the locals soon recognise his face from the recent batch of wanted posters. But before he can be tried for robbery, the bracelet on his arm comes to life and moments later strange aliens arrive in ships to capture the townsfolk. As his memory comes back to him, the stranger realises that in order to free his wife and the townsfolk, he must join forces with the man whose gold he stole...

Cowboys & Aliens is based on Scott Mitchell Rosenberg's graphic novel and follows Jake Lonergan (Daniel Craig), a man with no memory, who sets out to find out who he is. All he knows is that he can take care of himself, but as his memories start to return he discovers he was married and that he is wanted for stealing a shipment of gold. That gold belonged to Colonel Woodrow Dolarhyde (Harrison Ford), a powerful and rich cattleman who controls the town of Absolution, which is where Lonergan finds himself.

When aliens arrive in space craft and start taking the locals, in much the same way as cowboys lasso cattle, Lonergan and Dolarhyde reluctantly join forces and with the rest of the town set off to track down the aliens lair and retrieve their people. Another mysterious traveller, Ella Swenson (Olivia Wilde) is showing a little too much interest in Lonergan and seems to know more about his past than she's letting on.

When this movie started I was a little concerned that it wasn't going to be overly impressive. My concerns grew when in one of the opening scenes Lonergran is adopted by a dog of a group of cowboys he defeats. There were a couple of shots with the dog, out of focus, in the background and it was obvious the dog was a stuffed toy.

However, thankfully, that was the only major problem I had with this movie. The acting was uniformly impressive and it was good to see Clancy Brown finally play a sympathetic character. The effects are impressive and the story, while a little cliched, is also pretty strong.

There were no extras on the DVD we received for review.

As mindless, escapism goes Cowboys & Aliens is a fun diversion.


Darren Rea

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