Jonah Hex (Review)

(6/18/10; Western, Action)
Josh Brolin, John Malkovich, Megan Fox, Michael Fassbender, Will Arnett, Michael Shannon
SCR: Neveldine/Taylor; based on the characters created by John Albano
DIR: Jimmy Hayward
MPAA: PG-13 for intense sequences of violence and action, disturbing images and sexual content.
1 hour 21 mins

Adaptation of DC Comics’ western antihero opus arrived with a creative and financial thud. Barely over an hour once you remove the closing credits and long introduction, this $50 million production suffered mainly because the powers that be decided it should be rated PG-13.

Let’s see: the main character witnesses the brutal murder of his wife and son and is branded on the face before disfiguring himself to remove the mark. Are you kidding me? This movie needed to embrace the very nihilism that propels the story as opposed to be a family-friendly four-quadrant crowd-pleaser (it looks like it was shot that way, but then editing with a chainsaw after the fact).

You can’t fault anyone in front of the camera. Brolin brings considerable gravitas, even though he slurs and mumbles most of his line (due to his torn-up face). Once again, to maximize summer dollars, the studio apparently got out its trusty chainsaw (the one with the big PG-13 scrawled in blood on the side) and cut the balls off this movie.

There are oral surgeries more enjoyable than this flick.

(Warner Bros.)


Author: Dennis Willis

Dennis Willis is an award-winning producer, TV host, producer, director, editor (he preferred Avid until a torrid affair with Adobe Premiere, and the rest is history), author and film critic (print and radio). Dennis produced and hosted the TV programs Reel Life, FilmTrip, Soundwaves (1983-2008) and produces the annual Soundwaves Xmas program. He is currently the film critic on KGO Radio in San Francisco, and a member of both the San Francisco Film Critics Circle and the Broadcast Film Critics Association.

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