* * * * (Western sci-fi)
Question: Combine a good old-fashioned western with a sci-fi movie, and what do you get?
Answer: Cowboys & Aliens.
We actually enjoyed this bizarre movie, which was played straight, with some great, far-out performances by Daniel Craig, Harrison Ford and the rest of the cast.
Craig plays a mysterious stranger who wakes up in the desert with no recollection of who he is or where he's been. He staggers into Absolution, an old mining town filled with some interesting characters, including cattle baron Woodrow Dolarhyde (Ford).
The town is attacked by mean-looking huge aliens who steal a number of inhabitants in their dragonfly-style spaceships.
And what is this big metal bracelet that the stranger has on his wrist? And why? And who is this ethereal woman who keeps following him and seems to know who he is?
Soon into the movie we learn that he is Jake Lonergan, an outlaw wanted for stealing gold coins. Soon, Lonergan assembles a posse that eventually grows to be a coalition of sorts, with townsmen, a woman, a boy, a dog and then a gang of bandits, and finally an Indian tribe. It all comes down to the final battle between the cowboys and the aliens.
The real fun is getting to that final showdown. The patter between the different groups is lots of fun, and there are a few classic lines.
While you are held in suspense as to who Lonergan is and why the aliens are here, you can see where this one is going. But it is still a lot of fun getting there.
Rated PG-13, with violence. No sex, and I don't remember any profanity.