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Saturday, 24 December 2011

AFICIONADO REVIEW: "COWBOYS & ALIENS" EXTENDED EDITION ON BLU-RAY

Defending the Earth, Cowboy style. COWBOYS & ALIENS, now on Blu-ray and DVD. Images: PARAMOUNT.

Both lassoing and blasting its way past the $100 million dollar worldwide box office, the western/sci-fi blend of COWBOYS & ALIENS makes its exciting debut on Blu-ray and DVD in the UK from PARAMOUNT DVD on December 26th-the perfect Boxing Day/Christmas aftermath family action/adventure movie to settle down with, to be accompanied, of course, by tons of mouth immersive popcorn. Put your mindset purely into cinematic blockbuster entertainment mode and you'll have a dependably great time, headed by two of the movie industries most popular stars of the adrenalin kind: Han Solo/Indiana Jones himself, Harrison Ford, and continuing James Bond star Daniel Craig, who make a fine pairing of character opposites ultimately going way beyond their lives in the American West in helping the town of Absolution survive an onslaught attack of aliens from another universe, in this criminally under-rated movie from Summer 2011 and which I strongly recommend purchasing in its Triple Play edition.

Jake Lonergan (Daniel Craig) takes on the aliens in this cool poster art.

Check out STAR WARS AFICIONADO's original theatrical review here:STAR WARS AFICIONADO MAGAZINE: AFICIONADO REVIEW: "COWBOYS & ALIENS". The new extended cut of the film (available only on Blu-ray, whilst the original version is on the DVD) adds nearly twenty minutes of material to the film and improves it greatly, giving the story much more subtlety and room to breathe. Most welcome is the fact that we also get to see a bit more of the film's fine supporting actors, like Clancy Brown, Adam Beach and Sam Rockwell, whilst action and gore buffs will enjoy the extended, and more violent, action scenes of man versus alien.

Lonergan and Dolarhyde prepare to confront the alien menace.

Harrison Ford is as good as ever as the crusty hero Woodrow Dolarhyde.
Olivia Wilde continues her impressive film career playing the mysterious Ella.

Originally made on film-a deliberate choice by Favreau-as all classic westerns are made in the format-and mercifully not released in 3-D (although several tests scenes were shot in the format), COWBOYS looks absolutely fantastic in its digital Blu-ray transfer, with sharp detail that brings the dedicated production/costume design and gorgeous cinematography to life, alongside crisp and terrific sound design that really comes out to hit you on your sofas. This is the best you'll ever see the film: the bigger the television you have the better the experience. There's also some solid, if hardly comprehensive extras, including a nice behind the scenes look at the film (split into five different sections) involving all of the films main stars and behind the scenes talent-all of whom clearly enjoyed making the film, interviews by Favreau with the cast and crew (including producers Ron Howard, Steven Spielberg and Brian Grazer) conducted after the movies completion, and an intriguing audio commentary from the IRON MAN director who lives and breathes movie knowledge across all genres, especially sci-fi and westerns, and loves to use the advanced film-making tools and special effects at his disposal to aid rather than hinder character on the ambitious hybrid genre movie. The only shame is that the film's skillful trailer campaign and the 2011 cast/crew footage from COMIC CON (which famously had Harrison Ford escorted onto the stage in handcuffs by the police) don't make inclusion.

Director Jon Favreau with the COWBOYS & ALIENS cast at COMIC CON.
Ford, Wilde and Craig pose for publicity at COMIC CON.


AFICIONADO OVERALL RATINGS FOR TRIPLE PLAY EDITION:

Extended Movie 8.5 out of 10


Special Features: 7 out of 10


Check out our previous comprehensive COWBOYS & ALIENS coverage here: STAR WARS AFICIONADO MAGAZINE: COWBOYS AND ALIENS

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