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A Million Ways To Die In The West Review

Howdy ladies and gents, time for the second review in my comedy double of the day and this comes in the form of A Million Ways To Die In The West. This film I’ve been curious about for a while, but wasn’t overly hyped for because I wasn’t too fussed about Ted back in 2012. But I wanted to give Seth MacFarlane the benefit of the doubt especially because of the western genre that was being brought into play. So how does his second live-action film fare? Well read on and find out.

A_Million_Ways_to_Die_in_the_West_posterHere’s the story summary:

“In 1882 Arizona, courage-less sheep farmer Albert Stark loses his beloved girlfriend Louise as a result of his withdrawal from a duel. He soon meets Anna, through whom he discovers his confidence and his courage. After falling in love with her, Stark soon realizes his true potential when Anna’s husband, the infamous outlaw Clinch Leatherwood, arrives in town seeking retribution for Stark’s relationship with his wife.”

The story is decent enough, however it is not the funny adventure I think MacFarlane fans were hoping for. I think the main problems with the story are: 1) We’ve seen this type of thing before. 2) The film is too long. 3) There’s a lot of points where it feels like nothing is happening. 4) The jokes are too far apart from each other. And 5) The jokes aren’t always funny. Basically what we have is a western with modern pop culture references meshed together and it is a clash of styles, especially when you have a lot of western codes and conventions working but then you have dialogue that doesn’t belong in that era of time. Even Ted, a film I wasn’t too keen on had a more streamlined story and better sense of cohesion, plus that film had its jokes coming quick a fast as opposed to this film. As with MacFarlane’s previous material the jokes are unashamedly bold, crude and offensive in some way whether it be about race, sex, drugs or toilet humour. The overall laughs in this film feel like a dodgy Family Guy episode, sometimes of it works but most of it falls flat.

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When it comes to the cast they are good, but none of the characters are that layered or interesting. Seth MacFarlane as Albert Stark is alright, he does an admirable job as the lead character, but Stark isn’t that likeable. He’s a coward, has no backbone and most of his jokes aren’t that funny. Charlize Theron as is good Anna, she is fun, a badass with a gun and is one of the best people in the film. Amanda Seyfried was alright as Louise but her character was so unlikable as she was such an air head and very superficial. Neil Patrick Harris as Foy was great, I’ve never been a fan of Harris, but he was one of the funniest people as he had some great dialogue and scenes. Giovanni Ribisi is pretty funny as Edward, the guy is so kind, innocent and oblivious to adult-based situations. Ribisi is one of the funnier people in the film and Sarah Silverman as Ruth is good too, she’s strange and does so many terrible things but still remains so happy about things. And finally Liam Neeson as Clinch Leatherwood was cool, rough and as badass as always, but compared to some of the other films in recent years I film like he was very underutilized.

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One of the best aspects of the film is cameo appearances, two in particular are really, really good and if you enjoy your film references then you’ll love these individual moments when they come.

At least the presentation is good. The film looks pretty with the desert and mountain locations looking beautiful and the soundtrack by Joel McNeely is nice and subtle for the style of film that this is, it works best when it is loud and grand.

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In conclusion A Million Ways To Die In The West has moments of fun and interest, but is long, boring and lacking any of the charm and comic timing that makes shows like Family Guy and American Dad so fun. Maybe the film wasn’t mean for me, I’m not sure, there are just a lot of things about this film that doesn’t come together which ultimately makes this film so underwhelming and forgettable.

Rating: 5.5/10 (Nowhere near as funny as it should be)

So what did you think A Million Ways To Die In The West? Did you love it or were you disappointed? Whatever your thoughts be sure to leave your comments below and I’ll see ya on the next review yo. 😀

 
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Posted by on June 3, 2014 in Film Reviews, Films, Media, Reviews

 

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Ted Review

Good day to you ladies and gentlemen and welcome to another film review and today I will be reviewing the comedy film, Ted.

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When I first saw the trailer for this film I was like “Wow, this looks awesome!” The thing is that the first part of the trailer just looked a little lame and generic and then when Ted actually starts doing all these crazy things with Mark Wahlberg and you hear the things he says and you immediately think of Peter Griffin from Family Guy. I was thinking that all that must be a good combination for a good comedy film, so I saw it the yesterday and you know what? It was good, though not as funny as I thought it would be.

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So when it comes to the story, most of it is explained in the trailer, but for those unaware he is a summary: John Bennet was a lonely kid who just wanted a friend, so then he is given a teddy bear and at one point he wishes he was real and by some crazy twist of fate the bear comes to life. So then John and Ted are friends for life from childhood right into their adult years. However now John has a girlfriend called Lori and she wants more out of their 4-year relationship. So then John’s world starts to fluctuate when both his friendship with Ted and relationship with Lori is tested to the maximum.

Overall the story is pretty decent, very similar in feel to a Family Guy episode but in a live-action film format. It is full of jokes from start to finish and does have moments of emotion and drama which kind of works or doesn’t depending on how much you like that stuff to be part of a comedy film, the plot does fall into a bit of familiar and clichéd territory, but other than that its a story that works.

When it comes to characters there’s a lot to like. Firstly Mark Wahlberg as John was great, he does have a great presence on-screen and when you see all the stuff he’s gone through in his life you do just want him to find happiness and when he’s torn between Ted and Lori you do feel for him. Now to talk about the title character Ted voiced by Seth MacFarlane, he was awesome. He was cocky, selfish and full of jokes. MacFarlane brings a lot of weight to his character through his voice work and I think the reason I enjoyed the character is that even though he was a bit of bastard, he knows how to have a good time and his crazy antics normally lead to some unnaturally cool situations. And then we have Mila Kunis as Lori Collins, she was so beautiful it was ridiculous. You could understand her character because she wanted her and John to move on with their lives but Ted kept getting in the way of their future, so yeah she was great. I also want to give a shout-out to Joe McHale and Matt Walsh as Rex and Thomas who are both people who were in one of my favourite TV shows Community. Their characters were great in the film and I just thought it was great to see them in this film.

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As the first feature-length directorial debut from Seth MacFarlane, he does pretty well. Everything moves as a decent pace and there is number of cues that MacFarlane takes from his TV history and translates it to the big screen. The plot, the style of humour, the actors involved and even the music feels so much like Family Guy its mad. As I said before there any many jokes in this film, from numerous pop culture references of television, film and music to verbal jokes about stereotypes and race and some visual gags too. It really did feel like watching Family Guy or to some degree a lighter episode of South Park. However for all the humour that there was in the film I didn’t find myself laughing all that much. I laughed twice in the entire film and the rest of the time I was grinning. It’s not to say that Ted isn’t funny, it’s just that, like watching Family Guy or American Dad the humour is a bit hit or miss, you’ll either laugh or you won’t. And really wanted to burst out laughing, but this film didn’t have the kind of kinetic, fast-paced humour that you get from MacFarlane’s animated material.

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In conclusion Ted isn’t a bad film by any means, I was just hoping to laugh a lot more than I did in the film. Again if you are a massive fan of Family Guy and American Dad then you will have a lot of fun with this film, there’s a lot laughs and references all over and the audience I was sitting in laughed all the way through. For me Ted was a fun little film to watch, however it just wasn’t as funny as I had hoped it would be.

Rating: 6.5

Well that’s been my review, hopefully you enjoyed it and drop me a comment and tell me whether you liked it or not. Until next time people, laters! 😀

 
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Posted by on August 16, 2012 in Film Reviews, Films, Media, Reviews

 

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