Westerns don't really get much love these days, which is sad considering that it's one of the classic movie genres and for decades a reliable supplier of much on-screen badassery and general mayhem. It's understandable in a way, since the typical Western lends itself well to slower pacing and methodical storytelling. Also, after watching Clint Eastwood's Unforgiven, you'd think there wasn't any reason to make another western again. Truth is, the last decade has seen a bit of a comeback for this type of movie, mostly as remakes. 2010 had the Coen brothers try their hand at a remake of sorts with True Grit, and back in 2007 we were treated to a good, old fashioned Western with 3:10 to Yuma (remake of a 1957 flick), which features, like any movie set in the Old West ought to, plenty of fightin', murderin', thievin', and drinkin'.
|I bet y'all didn't know Batman could build time machines...|
|A Gatling gun in the first ten minutes. Always a great sign.|
In the nearby town of Bisby, and while the rest of his gang is away, Wade is captured by the local sheriff. Haasty arrangements are made to make sure that Wade is sent off to jail at once, where he'll surely be executed. The only problem is that Wade's gang is due back in town any minute, and they sure as hell won't be too happy to see their boss in shackles. Another problem? The sheriff doesn't have enough men to safely transport Wade. Evans steps up and offers his help, in exchange for $200 in order to help pay his debts. Evans leaves his boys at home, telling them to care for the farm and their mother. The terms are agreed and the crew sets out to make sure they get Wade on the titular 3:10 train to Yuma at all costs.
|Charlie (Ben Foster) is a psychopath. The weird ginger beard gives him away.|
|Every Western needs a bar scene were ethanol is ingested by the gallon.|
3:10 to Yuma is a rare treat. It's a good modern Western, of which there are few, and even as a pure action movie it holds up remarkably well. One of Bale's best roles, with compelling action and a thrilling finale. Even the opening with its fast paced stagecoach hold up is great stuff. If you haven't seen 3:10, you're missing out on one hell of a movie. Watch it, and you won't regret it. If you're in the mood for the genre, or you have an unexplained Christian Bale obsession like my sister, you owe it to yourself.
TL;DR - Bale. Crowe. Fonda. Foster. Six shooters. Chases. Shootouts. The Old West. What the hell more could you ask for? - 9/10