Search

The Magnificent Seven, review: ‘Denzel Washington commands the screen in big cowboy flick’

08:00 21 September 2016

Vincent D'Onofrio, Martin Sensmeier, Manuel Garcia-Rulfo, Ethan Hawke, Denzel Washington, Chris Pratt and Byung-hun Lee star. Picture: Columbia Pictures

Vincent D'Onofrio, Martin Sensmeier, Manuel Garcia-Rulfo, Ethan Hawke, Denzel Washington, Chris Pratt and Byung-hun Lee star. Picture: Columbia Pictures

© 2016 Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios Inc. and CTMG. All rights reserved. **ALL IMAGES ARE PROPERTY OF SONY PICTURES ENTERTAINMENT

The latest cowboy flick stays true to the spirit of the original, with most of the new Seven matching up

The remake of The Magnificent Seven is a western made in the new old fashioned way. Although the genre was pronounced dead at least three decades ago, they keep popping up from time to time, but not like this.

Fuqua’s take is not revisionist or deconstructionist or elegiac or horror hybrid or contemporary spaghetti or Tarantinoesque, it is a cowboy film as cowboy films used to be: a big mainstream entertainment.

The story of seven outlaws gathering together to rescue a town of poor decent people from evil exploiters is a tried and trusted one that seems to work in any context be it samurai or space pilots.

So the film has sense enough to stick to the basic plot, but does it the way that plot would be done today.

The action is more intense and violent (some editing looks to have been needed to keep this a 12A) and the dialogue is not strictly period. But it is true to the spirit of the original in that it is a star vehicle and the stars are its main pleasures.

Of course, old timers will tell you that them there modern movie stars aren’t a patch on the proper stars of classic era Hollywood.

I’m not sure I agree; Denzel Washington moves across the screen with as much assurance as anyone in the history of the flicks and though there is still a nagging feeling that Chris Pratt has been promoted beyond his abilities, he’s fine here.

The original was a launch pad for Steve McQueen, but I don’t think anyone’s going to break out here. Korean Lee Byung-hun is effective as one of the seven, but even in a genre where being taciturn is a virtue, his limited command of English is a hindrance.

The score keeps teasing you that it might burst into Elmer Bernstein’s rousing original version, but frustratingly keeps holding off.

Maybe they thought the film wasn’t quite worthy of it. But though this new seven may not be magnificent, they walk taller than many of the summer’s blockbuster offerings.

For reviews of the blu-ray releases of Kubrick’s Paths of Glory and Alan Ladd and Veronica Lake in 40s noir The Blue Dahlia visit halfmanhalfcritic.weebly.com

Rating: 3/5 stars

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Hackney Gazette visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Hackney Gazette staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Hackney Gazette account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Latest Hackney Entertainment Stories

Yesterday, 17:00

Zoe Paskett talks to Jack Cooke, author of The Tree Climber’s Guide, about the benefits of free climbing and why it’s ok to get a few bumps and bruises

Yesterday, 08:00

Benjamin Murphy creates artwork out of electrical tape and titles his pieces based on the work of Plath, Poe and Camus, he tells Zoe Paskett

Mon, 17:06

Korova in Tufnell Park serves delicious Mediterranean style food throughout the day using locally sourced, seasonal produce.

Mon, 14:10

Gemma Arterton and Glenn Close star in zombie apocalypse movie that grabs you from the very first moment

Friday, September 23, 2016

Adam Spreadbury-Maher and Becca Marriott have re-imagined Pucinni’s opera, moving from the Paris Latin Quarter of the 1840s to the 2016 Dalston quarter

Thursday, September 22, 2016

William Rees talks to Zoe Paskett about Mystery Jets’ album, gaining perspective on the world and losing a band mate, ahead of headlining Hackney Wonderland festival

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Le Mas Candille on the French Riviera offers a five star experience with ultra-relaxing massages and refreshing pilates.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Bobby Hillson talks about her late husband Keith Cunningham’s secretive approach to his art

Newsletter Sign Up

Most read entertainment

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Competitions

If you’re obsessed with Apple or just love a good gadget, this is a prize that will blow you away! An incredible £3,333 to spend on Apple goodies! How would you like to be the proud new owner of the Apple Watch?

As we grow older it becomes more and more important to have means to travel about safely and quickly. Our friendship groups and families grow and the need to have a car that is not only safe but also fast and big enough for all our needs is ever more important. There are many cars on the market for such needs but none deals with them as efficiently or as neatly as a VW Golf Estate. These cars are build strong, long lasting and spacious for a reason. They cater to the needs of many and are some of the most popular cars currently on the market.

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now