Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Movie Journal: Appaloosa

Appaloosa is unlike any other movie of 2008 I've thus far had the opportunity to see. I feel like there's not much to say, but I will say this.

Appaloosa is a movie that has received very mixed reviews. Some say it's stupid, and a complete waste of the talents of both Viggo Mortensen and Ed Harris. Read TV Guide's review and you'll see what I mean, and the same goes for Wall Street Journal. Peter Travers of Rolling Stone, on the other hand, gave it three-and-a-half stars out of four and called it "a potently acted powerhouse that sticks in the mind and the heart," and "gripping entertainment that keeps springing surprises." I disagree on both counts, but I also refuse to side with Maitland Mcdonagh's impression that it is "dull and preposterous." It may be dull, but it's not preposterous. Upon closer inspection the characters are actually very rich and enjoyable to watch.

At the same time, after almost two hours of watching these characters interact as they pursue their innermost goals, I found the eventual conclusion to be anticlimactic and unsatisfying. In the end, Appaloosa is not a truly great movie, though it is an impressive one.

7 out of 10

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