In Jonah Hex, a hideously scarred Josh Brolin grumbles and mumbles his way through uninspired and rushed actions scenes as the titular gunslinger. Megan Fox sports pouty lips and revealing cleavage as the whore with a heart of gold and the only woman who could ever love a man as disfigured as Hex. John Malkovich plays an evil version of himself as Quentin Turnbull, a man out to prove just how evil he is by murdering innocent people and destroying property. And Will Arnett, one of the funniest men on the planet, turns in a performance as a stone cold serious military man.
Jonah Hex suffers greatly from being a "comic book movie," when it could've been a classic tale of a revenge. Not happy with simply being a modern western with a genuinely cool hero, science fiction elements were shoehorned in, causing the film to usher in memories of the notoriously terrible Wild Wild West film. At least it can't be said that the film jumps the shark at any moment, as it's pretty clear right off the bat what you're in for. Hex, finding himself outnumbered by a group of men looking to collect the bounty on his head, reveals two large miniguns strapped to the side of his horse. He opens fire, without the horse getting burned or so much as scared. He then manages to make the horse stand up its hind legs and pivot, something I was unaware that horses could do.
Being a comic book movie, Hex has a superpower never present in the comic books that gave him life. He can talk to the dead by touching a corpse. Touching them brings them back to life, though only Hex can see and hear them. If he does it for too long, it causes the deceased immense pain. Something is said about Hex walking the line between life and death, which is all the reasoning given behind his ability.
The highlight of Jonah Hex is its talented cast, but there isn't a man or woman here who isn't completely wasted. Brolin is a great actor and has the presence to portray a hero of Hex's caliber, but he's reduced to mumbly one liners. Malkovich, who is almost always fun to watch, isn't even given enough to overact with. At the very least he could've chewed the scenery, but he isn't even allowed that much.
If you're a big action fan with relatively low standards, I supposed Jonah Hex delivers on some level. Josh Brolin has style, and scars are undeniably cool (especially to that extreme), so you may be able to squeeze some enjoyment out of the gunfights. The film is extremely short, with the runtime clocking in at around an hour and twenty minutes, so at least the film doesn't drag at all.
Jonah Hex attempts absolutely nothing new and by giving him a superpower, it seems to go out of its way to be derivative. It's a mess of gunshots and explosions that's so devoid of substance, you can hear the wind blowing tumbleweeds right through the middle of it.
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