Western movies will always have its place in American cinema. Though westerns may not have its prevalence like it once did with the likes of John Wayne, Steve Mcqueen, and early Clint Eastwood, there’s no denying that people still enjoy pseudo-fictional tales of the old west.
Which brings us to Magnificent Seven, which is a remake of the Steve McQueen and Charles Bronson lead film of the same title and premise. The update is really just a new cast and updated tech and action to which makes the old one a bit boring. You could probably say the same about the oscar nominated True Grit by the Coen Brothers and the John Wayne led original back in the 60s.
This time Magnificent Seven is helmed by Antoine Fuqua which stars legendary Denzel Washington who has been on previous Fuqua films(Training Day and Equalizer), and Chris Pratt, who is taking the silver screen by storm. Each cast member of the seven gives vital life to bringing a diverse and entertaining popcorn style flick for the viewers. Denzel with his trademark style of dialogue befitting for the lead member, Pratt and his charismatic charm and humor. Ethan Hawke is a great character actor who never seems to fail at bringing a little humanity into his roles. Vincent D’Onofrio is always a powerhouse, but even he surprised me with what he brought to his character. Byung-hun Lee, Manuel Garcia-Rulfo, and Martin Sensmeier round out the rest of the Mag Seven crew with their respective skill set.
The crew faces off against Bartholomew Bogue and his merciless gang that has taken over a mining town. Bogue, played by Peter Sarsgaard, is evil and played with enough gravitas to warrant a beat-down, western style. Not much development is given for our antagonists, only enough to give the audience the idea of who’s bad and who’s even badder so that we can cheer for our heroes when they roll into town.
Fuqua is pretty well-known to amp up the action as his films are always action pack. But not too over the top like Michael Bay. Fuqua makes his actors shine above the action, as to let the actors make the action happen as opposed to just having random stuff blow up. And Mag Seven is no exception when it comes to the action.
The cast is what makes this western entertaining as hell. Anyone can throw a few actors and make cowboys out of them while shooting stuff and blowing stuff up. But unless the characters are entertaining and worth giving attention to, its easy to dismiss. And it’s not even about having A-listers, as there have been quite a few western films released in the past decade that flew under the radar. Nevertheless, Magnificent Seven is worth seeing on the big screen, not magnificent but incredibly fun.
Image courtesy of Metro-Goldwyn-Meyer and Columbia Pictures.