You know, we should have suspected that Cowboys and Aliens wouldn't live up to the hype when we saw Jon Favreau everywhere. We were distracted by seeing Olivia Wilde everywhere, but still...
I still took a chance on the movie, and it was good, not great. Daniel Craig was the top selling point as Jake, the guy who can't remember how he got a strange looking bracelet that will fire off lasers occasionally....in 1875.
Maybe the problem was we had a generic story, a gunslinger with a mysterious past coming to a town down on its luck and helps them face down a major threat, and added aliens who plan to take over Earth because the puny humans can't possibly fight back.
Or maybe it was a case of too many high-powered cooks not making a good enough broth. The producers included Steven Spielberg, Jon Favreau and Ron Howard. The writers included the guys from Lost and Fringe. It was still entertaining, but this was one of those times where I was glad to spend only $5.50 on it.
But in the name of God, how could it barely earn enough cash than the SMURFS?? I mean, how did they succeed (for lack of a better term) where Alvin and the Chipmunks, Hop and Yogi Bear didn't? OK, maybe it was the kids or nostalgic parents, but by THAT much?
I noticed the BEMs looked a lot like Cooper, the alien from Super 8. At least that movie had a better story that ended in Spielberg schmaltz but still earned big bucks. I would have really enjoyed it if we had a situation where primitive puny humans figured out a way to knock down the aliens without some unexpected help. But the movie decided some "help" was needed. You'll see where, especially if you saw the trailer a couple hundred times before the movie.
The second movie, Captain America in 3-D, was much better. It was fast-paced, loaded with action and good performances. Chris Evans is Captain America without a doubt, but Hugo Weaving was just scary as Red Skull. He makes Voldermort look lame. I also enjoyed Dominic Cooper as Howard Stark, and it's easy to expect him to be the father of Robert Downey Jr., and Sebastian Stan as Bucky..this time as a young man and not a teen sidekick. I really hope that somehow Hayley Atwell will be brought back for a Captain America sequel...as Stephanie Carter, the granddaughter of Peggy--and SHIELD agent.
I also notice Stan Lee is becoming just like Hitchcock, making sure he gets a cameo somewhere in the Marvel movie-verse. He's in Captain America, but I would have cast him in something else.
For now, the Avengers are next. Joss Whedon says directing this movie was easier than he thought, and that his version may be better than the original. Let's hope he's right in nine months.