9/17/07

3:10 to Yuma


Well, while I'm at the review thing, I might as well talk about a movie I actually liked. 3:10 to Yuma is quite possibly the best movie this summer. Wait, it's still summer, right? . . . ok, yeah.

Christian Bale plays the part of a rancher who lost his foot in the civil war. Exactly how, his children are never told. He's never been a hero, never been an activist. He takes his first step into wild territory when he's pushed to the breaking point by a money-grubbing land-owner who dams up the water to his ranch, making farming impossible and money tight. Dan (Bale) is so deep in debt that he desperately seeks a way to find a source of money. When notorious gangster Ben Wade (Russel Crowe) wanders into town and is captured, Dan is presented with an opportunity. He volunteers to be a part of a team that takes Wade to the prison train - the 3:10 to Yuma - for a hefty $200. Well, hefty for the post-Civil War West.

Why is this such a great movie? Well, the story is great, the acting is fabulous, the cinematography is breath-taking, but by far the best part about this movie is the ending. I'm not going to give that away, though. Another notable aspect of the movie, though, is Dan's son's fascination with Wade. Throughout the movie, Wade swaggers around in his gangster-like way and captures the imagination of 14-year-old Will. It's through this infatuation that we come to the realization of Ben Wade's human side. Yes, he is a cold, hard bandit who would kill a man for spilling a shot of whiskey, and he readily admits this to Will. But as Ben comes to respect Dan, we are keenly aware, because of earlier confrontations with Will, that Ben's mind is slowly changing.

Now, I'll admit that I haven't seen the original 3:10 to Yuma - this is a remake - but as its own movie it stands strong. There are plenty other aspects to love about this movie. Just go see it for yourself! I'm sure you'll enjoy it, even if you're not normally into westerns.


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