I admit there are times when it is hard for me to find the words to write a review on the few movies that I do get to see each year...this is not one of those times. Last year on mine and Zachary Quinto's birthday I went to the theater to watch Star Trek: Into Darkness this year I realized just how lucky I was to be born at the start of the summer movie season (the three months out of the year when Hollywood releases as many films as possible to make the maxim amount of money) and that is how I found myself sitting in a dark theater in the middle of a Monday with old and young (but not too young) watching A Million Ways to Die in the West.
I don't read reviews before seeing a film because I like to make up my own mind and don't like reading negative comments about the movies I am looking forward to seeing. To be honest I wasn't expecting much out of this one written, produced, directed by and starring Seth MacFarlane because well I'll just say it, MacFarlane has the mind of a 8 year old boy (which after all is why us fans love him) but I ended up really, REALLY liking this movie.
It's a simple plot and I don't want to give anything away, let me just say that A Million Ways to Die in the West is about a man, a sheep farmer played by the always fun MacFarlane named Albert who hates living on the American frontier along with his friend Edward played the great Giovanni Ribisi, Edward's girlfriend Ruth played by the enjoyable Sarah Silverman and newcomer to the town Anna played by the wonderful Charlize Theron who turns his life upside down. The film also stars Liam Neeson, Amanda Seyfried and Neil Patrick Harris. With a cast like this(and some unexpected cameos) how could you go wrong? MacFarlane may not show or mention ALL 1 million ways to die in the west but some of the ones he comes up with, I guarantee you wouldn't have dreamed of. The dance and fair scenes alone are worth the price of a matinee ticket.
In other words the crazy yet lovable cast of characters at the center of the film IS the reason to watch. Each actor is perfectly casted in his or her role (and seem to be having fun with their parts) which is why at the end I had a nice feeling in my heart and enjoyed every minute. Yes the film throws all the western cliches at you, the good guy, the bad guy, the girl, American Indians, horses, guns and yes a lot of poop jokes, but that is the whole point to making a parody, Right? And I was rooting for Albert throughout the movie, after all wanting the good guy to win IS the reason to make a western Hell I'll even go as far to say there were times in the film reminiscent of Blazing Saddles and Three Amigos!.
As I said I really like this movie-I laughed out loud (along with others in the audience), I laughed on the inside and at times I asked myself, did I just laugh at that?
When I walked out of the cold dark theater into the hot bright sun I was happy because Seth MacFarlane had made a silly yet with a beautiful heart film.
If any of what I wrote makes you think "I would like to laugh or I need a good laugh." you should go see A Million Ways to Die in the West (and make sure you stay for the ending credits)