Cowboys & Aliens is a strange movie. Directed by Jon Favreau (Iron Man), the film tries to be a western flick, but at the same time, it tries to be a sci-fi alien flick. Note the word I used there – “tries”. It doesn’t necessarily succeed.
A man (Daniel Craig) wakes up in the middle of the desert and doesn’t remember who he is, with no clues except a mysterious technological bracelet on his arm. After successfully fighting off a group of bandits on horseback, he rides into a small town and meets its residents. Rivalries stir, friendships are made, and a story appears to be set. You know, if it continued along this line, it would actually have been much better.
But in come the alien invaders. Let’s think of this split away from the cowboy storyline. Now you’ve got aliens coming to a civilization, and people running around and trying to destroy them and… the whole thing starts to sound a little like Independence Day.
Now bring the two genres together. You’re left with a jumbled up mess trying to construct a wild west storyline in an environment not meant for it. They are two lines not meant to be crossed. Really, it isn’t even about the aliens. It’s Cowboys with Aliens. The alleged “aliens” are basically replaceable with bandits. They even come to Earth for the people’s gold.
I’m surprised that big names even bothered to take part in it. The movie stars Daniel Craig (Casino Royale), with supporting roles by Harrison Ford and Olivia Wilde.
Age Recommendation: As for if this is kid friendly, well, even I was wincing, with all the fake blood splattering everywhere. 11+.
Final Verdict: All in all, it could have worked as a cowboy film, but the aliens screwed it up. 5/10