A lot of people were getting excited over ‘The Magnificent Seven’ remake, and while my expectations were low as I wasn’t particularly fond over the trailer, that could come across as my taste for westerns are never high when compared to a superhero film or an animated film that I get super excited about. That doesn’t mean I can’t enjoy westerns, I have liked a couple of the genre’s films that I’ve seen, such as the 2010 ‘True Grit’ remake and the western themed third entry of ‘Back to the Future’. However, for the most part, I just don’t get excited over films in this particular genre. With that said, does ‘The Magnificent Seven’ change my mind over westerns or is it too familiar of past westerns?
In 1879 in a little community mining town of Rose Creek, a corrupt land owner named Bogue steals the land of Rose Creek, leaving to the distaste of many locals who try to rise up. However, things don’t go to plan and the town is now captive by the corrupt land owner. It’s up to Emma and her friend Teddy Q to save their town by enlisting the help of a warrant officer named Sam Chisolm in the name of revenge.
At times, I was pleasantly surprised by ‘The Magnificent Seven’ to be honest. Most of the acting performances from the film’s cast is superbly terrific. Standing out, Haley Bennett is brilliant as Emma Cullen, a woman who is not only tough, but seeks revenge from her town’s corruption. Denzel Washington is sublimed as Sam Chisolm and is a force to be reckon with as the perfect leading character. Even smaller supporting performances I really liked like Byung-hun Lee as Billy Rocks and Martin Sensmeier as Red Harvest who offered a lot of fun and badass action sequences. Even though some of the performances weren’t anything special, like Chris Pratt being a character who tries to go the comic-relief realm, but found his heart much more prominent. Ethan Hawke’s character was a huge question mark, finding it hard to find out what his story really is.
Although the film’s pacing has balancing problems, while the opening is particularly strong setting up the villain of the film, getting to Rose Creek can be a bit tedious to watch as it slowly builds these characters up looking to join the ranks of their magnificent seven. And even though the smaller parts can offer an extension of depth of character, look no further than to the character of Emma and Sam, most of the time it doesn’t do as good of a job getting me to care about these characters. Yet, the action sequences are worth of the price of admission alone, because they were spectacularly engaging and entertaining to watch, fast-paced and exhilaratingly fun to watch these seven become unstoppable in doing what’s right.
‘The Magnificent Seven’ isn’t quite magnificent, and while it does feature robust western action and some strong acting performances, you will find yourself looking at the watch a couple of times as the film’s pacing is limiting this film from being truly magnificent.