The two best special agents in the Wild West must save President Grant from the clutches of a diabolical, wheelchair-bound, steampunk-savvy, Confederate scientist bent on revenge for losing the Civil War.
Jim West is a guns-a-blazing former Civil War hero. Artemus Gordon is an inventive U.S. Marshal who excels in disguise. When the United States is threatened by psychotic Confederate Arliss Loveless, President Ulysses S Grant teams the duo up to bring him to justice. On a hazard-packed train journey from Washington, D.C. to Utah, West and Gordon must combine their skills to best Loveless and his diabolical machines.Written by
Chris Turner <email@example.com> and J. Kyle
George Clooney was attached to play Artemus Gordon, but turned it down reportedly because it was a supporting part. See more »
When Loveless and James West are hanging from the spider while the wheelchair supports their weight, there are several shots of Loveless' wheelchair release lever. The first shot shows no hands on the lever. The next shot shows Loveless' hand on the lever. The next shot shows no hand on the lever. The next shot shows James West's hand on top of Loveless' hand on the lever. See more »
[having just diffused Dr. Loveless' mechanical legs after being kicked around - and stomped on - by them]
Capt. James West:
Well, Dr. Loveless. I bet you thought that was pretty funny, dancing on my head and all. Now, if you ask me, someone owes someone else here an apology.
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While trying to kill Southern General 'Bloodbath' McGrath, Captain Jim West crosses paths with US Marshall Artemus Gordon who is also after McGrath in order to uncover the brains behind his operation. With major scientists going missing all over the world, the President puts the two men together to prevent crazed Southerner Loveless from carrying out his threat to take over the US. The two team up using West's shoot first approach and Gordon's gadgets to take on the high-tech weaponry of Loveless.
Every year we have blockbusters that throw money at the screen in the hope of buying sufficient hype and effects to make people watch. Some times these films are actually quite good or at least OK but often they are shocking wastes of money that are just plain awful. That is the case here. Not having ever seen the TV show I can only imagine that I am missing out on the knowledge necessary to enjoy this film. The plot is just a spin on the mismatched partner movies we've all seen before, however here it goes into all sorts of cross-dressing and stupid gadget antics.
The action scenes are reasonable but are spoilt by just how damn stupid the whole thing is. The gadgets are just daft and the use of disguises and silly events just make it seem even more silly and not worth while. The overblown effects shots are just daft and the supposed 'visual climax' of the ultimate weapon is laughable.
The spark that existed in Men in Black is totally absent here. I had ZERO laughs all through this film. Only two in-jokes actually raised a smile (an amusing 'His Master's Voice' and a dig at Lawrence Kasdan). Smith tries hard but to see the Oscar nominee dressed up as a belly dancer is just plain embarrassing and he makes a fool of himself. Kline also is foolish and doesn't bond with Smith one bit. Hayek is wasted in a small role and the film's only interest in her is in her body, cutting to her ass as much as possible - she is a better actress than this and the film does her a huge disservice. To talk of how awful Brannagh is in this film is to understate the fact. This man, who I have seen recently in 'Shackleton', 'Rabbit Proof Fence' and 'Hamlet' being excellent is terrible here – he overacts to the point that it isn't even fun – it is just plain daft and annoying. Having him only have half a body just makes it all worse somehow.
Overall this is a rare thing – a summer blockbuster that will stick in you memory, it's just a shame it sticks for all the wrong reasons. It is absurd yet incredibly unfunny, full of good actors but lacking a single good performance and very expensive but just looking ridiculous with every increasingly dumb special effect shot.
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