3:10 to Yuma

I went to see a movie Saturday night with an ex-girlfriend. She'd heard from several friends that 3:10 to Yuma was really great and she just had to see it--so I was enlisted to keep her company. In the end, I think I liked the movie more than she did--much to my surprise.

Now, the movie does have a few problems--like nobody would ever act in the way that the "bad guy," outlaw Ben Wade, does here but Russell Crowe manages to sell the actions, more or less, with a smooth acting style that reminded me more of Clooney than Crowe. In less gifted hands the bad writing would have sank the movie. And that would be a shame since there's some great acting here by Christian Bale (the good guy) and Ben Foster (bad guy sidekick). And the cinematography is first rate albeit there's a few too many closeups for my taste.

Now don't get me wrong. The movie is well written for the most part but the actions of the outlaw, Ben Wade, just defy logic at a number of junctures. I've not seen the original movie so I don't know how they compare in this regard. Anyway...

The plot revolves around a handicapped rancher, Dan Evans (Christian Bale), who lost part of his leg in the Civil War. Rancher Evans needs money and respect--and Crowe, as the evil stagecoach robber, Ben Wade, inadvertently provides an opportunity for the rancher to get both. Making the story more interesting are the inner conflicts that many of the characters are enduring and Crowe's polish that enables him to imbue his character with the suave exterior that is necessary for his role. We need to like the evil robber--and we do.

Is it worth paying full price? I'll leave that decision up to you but it's definitely worth the matinée price. It's worth that much just to watch the Ben Foster and Peter Fonda work their respective characters. Foster is as bad as they come, and Fonda--well he manages to put a good bit of bad into a supposedly good guy.

Comments

Into the Light said…
I probably wouldn't have made to effort to get to the theater to see this one, but then I usually can wait for most movies to appear on DVD or my tv. Though I can't really say I've ever been disappointed by a Russell Crowe performance, I'm not really a fan and naturally resist watching a movie he's in. Go figure!

It's good to see you being social... that melancholy was disconcerting.
SassyAssy said…
I might just check this out when it hits dvd...doesn't prick my interest enough to sit still for it
Deana said…
When I first saw the commercial for this I told my hubby that Crowe must have been perfect for it because he is so hard to work with that you wouldn't get him unless he delivered. I thought about going to see it...it actually looks like a movie I'd like. So are you going to see Pitt in Jesse James too or leaving that one to DVD?

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