The Magnificent Seven is a 2016 remake of the 1960 Western epic film of the same name. It is directed by Antoine Fuqua and written by Nic Pizzolatto and Richard Wenk. The movie features an ensemble cast that holds the film together. Beware, there are some spoilers to this review.
In the small town of Rose Creek, the greedy robber baron Bartholomew Bogue (Peter Sarsgaard) moves in and begins to take over the town’s resources to increase his profits. After her husband (Matt Bomer) is killed in the ensuing conflict, Emma Cullen (Haley Bennett) leaves the town with her friend Teddy Q (Luke Grimes) to find bounty hunters who can help them. She first recruits United States Marshal warrant officer Sam Chisholm (Denzel Washington), who seems to recognize Bogue’s name. From there they recruit the gambler Joshua Faraday (Chris Pratt), Cajun hustler Goodnight Robicheaux (Ethan Hawke), Korean assassin Billy Rocks (Byung-hun Lee), the religious tracker Jack Horne (Vincent D’Onofrio), Mexican outlaw Vasquez (Manuel Garcia-Rulfo), and exiled Comanche warrior Red Harvest (Martin Sensmeier). The Seven head back to Rose Creek and with a plan to take it back.
The film’s premise is very similar to the original Western film. For instance, Washington’s character is very similar to Chris Adams, played by Yul Brynner in the original. However, while this movie is interesting, it lacks a lot of the inspiration that made the 1960 version so amazing. While it avoided some of the politics of the 1998 TV remake, it still had to get some digs at capitalism for some reason. You can tell it is forced and takes you out of the movie, especially since the villains are practicing communism, not capitalism. It is pretty obvious from the film.
The actors do a superb job. Denzel Washington, Chris Pratt, Haley Bennett, Byung-hun Lee, and especially Ethan Hawke are all excellent. Their performance carry the movie and makes it entertaining.
I will say the sets and visuals are exemplary. Mauro Fiore does an amazing with the cinematography. The sequences are films with excellence with everything from wide shots to the “up close and personal” scenes are amazing. Likewise, James Horner and Simon Franglen do an outstanding job with the music. While it is not as iconic as the original 1960s score, it definitely complemented the film.
Now, aside from the issues I mentioned above, I often do not think that the death of Chris Pratt’s character was necessary. Hey, I gave you a spoiler warning. Anyway, the movie would have been better had he survived. Now, his death is meaningful and heroic, but I still think that it would have been better had survived.
Bottom line, while the movie lacks the inspiration that was so prevalent in the original, this movie is entertaining. The actors are good, its aesthetics are excellent, and it is nice to see a Western made in modern times.
FAVORITE QUOTE: So far so good.
PARENTAL CONCERNS: Violence and Foul Language
Check out the trailer below:
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This article has been updated from a previous version.