Movie Review Rewind: Jonah Hex (2010)
Almost every review says Jonah Hex is terrible, messy, stupid, and a complete waste of time. Well my review is a little different. Jonah Hex is not a great movie by any stretch of the imagination, however, the movie is not that horrible. Were my expectations low? Yes. Did I expect another Dark Knight from DC Comics? Hell no. This DC character is probably interesting in the comics but the movie is short on time and material.
Josh Brolin plays Jonah Hex and he tries. He really does. He tries to be a courageous Confederate soldier (who becomes an outlaw) and appears to be cool and witty at times. But the problem is you can never seem to take the movie seriously no matter how hard they try and this goes for the characters as well.
Hex watches his family get killed by Quentin Turnbull (John Malkovich), who he used to fight next to in the Civil War. But after Hex makes a choice and kills Turnbull’s brother in the process, he seeks revenge and after he burns Hex’s house to the ground with his family inside, he scars half of Hex’s face. And after escaping death, Jonah Hex becomes a bounty hunter who can talk to the dead. I know right?
Once the U.S. military find out that Turnbull has faked his own death and now has weapons that can demolish a nation in his possession, they recruit Hex to find Turnbull and stop him once and for all. Now that’s a deal he just cannot pass up.
The movie is less than 80 minutes long, so it is very apparent that the material was thin. And what is sad is if director Jimmy Hayward wanted to make the movie last longer, he could not have done it. There is only the bare essentials in the movie with no surprises for the audience. Any longer and Jonah Hex would have been a lot worse.
Now I have to say there are some cool parts in the movie. Michael Fassbender plays Turnbull’s number one guy, Burke, and he adds some intensity and excitement to the movie. His character is a ticking time bomb just waiting to explode. And speaking of explosions, there are a lot in this movie. I think every time Hex leaves a place an explosion has to occur or a fire has to be started.
There are some action sequences that work pretty well. The one between Hex and Burke is entertaining, but it does not last that long. And the battle between Turnbull and Hex is interesting because part of it is in the present and the other part is in a dream.
Jonah Hex does have some cool parts in it and the beginning provides the feeling of a comic book atmosphere which I enjoyed. But the movie has so much potential with a character like Jonah Hex and an actor like Josh Brolin.
Megan Fox plays Lila (whore/Hex’s girlfriend) who is used for eye candy and mainly just shoots a gun in the movie. No acting is required. John Malkovich is too good to play such a mindless villain. He seems evil when we first meet him, but the character adds nothing. A back story about him perhaps would have helped, but there are no details in the movie. We know Turnbull killed Hex’s family because Hex killed his brother. That’s about it. Burke should have been the main bad guy. He is way more creepy and unpredictable.
Jonah Hex tries to be everything to everyone and ends up disappointing them all. I have gone a little easier on the movie because I have seen worse and my expectations were never that high to begin with. The real tragedy is how exciting and entertaining this movie could have been if it was handled with better care. But Brolin is still cool in my book. We do have Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps to look forward to.
“Nature Boy” Brandon Vick is the resident film critic of the SoBros Network, and star of Brandon’s Box Office In Your Mouth. Follow him on Twitter@SirBrandonV and be sure to search #VicksFlicks for all of his latest movie reviews.