Jonah Hex (2010)
Plot: Taking place after the Civil War in the old West, a power hungry soldier turned terrorist named Quentin Turnbull (John Malkovich) kills Jonah Hex’s (Josh Brolin) family and scars him for life, forcing Jonah to become a ruthless bounty hunter. Despite warrants out for his arrest, the Government employs Hex to hunt down Turnbull as he comes into possession of a powerful weapon that may spell doom for the county.
I’m not going to sit here and tell you that Jonah Hex is a great work of art, but it’s not nearly as bad as it’s been heralded. It opens with this lame animation sequence, but what makes Jonah Hex at the very least moderately entertaining is the acting. John Malkovich is over the top, but he always brings charisma. I like the eccentric villain Burke played with a lot of fun by Michael Fassbender. But the man who really brings his A-game is Jonah Hex himself, Josh Brolin. He’s really trying hard here. He practically carries the film, and even has some great one-liners. This is a putrid script and story, but these actors are at least bringing a solid energy to it. I find this better than something like this past summer’s Priest, in which the story and script are equally as bad, but you have actors like Paul Bettany just bringing nothing to the table. Now the one actress who isn’t up to the challenge is the one and only Megan Fox. She is just a bad actress. There’s no other way to put it. There’s a scene right after her and Hex sleep together that is just painful. I can’t even understand her at times as she mumbles through her lines. She’s not as bad as she was in Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen, which is just a legendary poor performance. Now I’ve been saying some nice things about this film, but it certainly has a shit load of issues. First of all, nothing gets explained. Things like Hex’s ability of talking to the dead or these giant golden marbles that can just destroy things…they just happen. Talk about lazy filmmaking. The worst are these random hallucinations scenes Hex has throughout the movie. I have no idea what the hell is going on! They don’t even explain Turnbull’s motives. Why does he want to destroy the government? They never get into his character at all. We are supposed to just accept he’s the villain. Despite getting a lot of effort from the actors, this movie does get really bland, just excruciatingly boring. The editing is also piss poor. We’ll be in a weird Jonah Hex hallucination moment, but then it switches to Turnbull firing the golden marbles with no smooth transition whatsoever. It’s also got one of the worst scores ever in a superhero movie. Like I said, this is no where near good, but Josh Brolin really saves it from being a complete misfire. It’s not horrible, but nothing that needs to be seen.
Rating: 5.5 out of 10 (Passable Entertainment)
Category Rankings (Spoilers Throughout):
Best Performance: Josh Brolin as Jonah Hex
-If they ever attempted to re-make a good version of this, which I strongly doubt when looking at its box office, I’d love to see what Brolin could do with a good Jonah Hex script.
Worst Performance: Megan Fox as Lilah
-Just truly terrible. She barely acts. What’s amazing about her performance is that her mouth stays the exact same throughout the whole movie. It’s kind of open, but it never moves, even when she speaks. There’s a scene where she’s being held by Turnbull, but she doesn’t seem to care.
Best Line: “They talk about you down here. You do yourself a favor. You stay ahead of death as long as you can, you hear? Because they got plans for you.” –Dead Jeb to Jonah Hex
-Wow, that stinks. Not something for Hex to look forward to when he dies.
Worst Line: “Tuuuuurnbaaaaaallllllllll!!!” –Hex
-Megan Fox probably had a worse line, but I couldn’t understand any of them. This was just a terrible scream by Hex. Very Revenge of the Sith Darth Vader ‘Nooooooooooo’ like level.
-Hex and Burke have a decent fight. Hex lights his own hand on fire to punch Burke…that was cool.
-Hex goes to this underground wrestling match where one of the guys has snake like abilities and looks like Voldemort…Ummmm, could we address this? What the hell is a random snake dude doing running around the old west? Huh?
-Even though this whole talking to the dead thing is completely random, Hex and Jeb do have a good conversation at the graveyard. Even though Hex had to kill Jeb, Jeb respects him and understands why. It’s actually a decent character scene for Hex.
-I’ve bitched about nothing getting an explanation in this movie, but this next one takes the cake. Hex goes to this Indian tribe to heal, but why the hell does a bird suddenly fly out of his mouth? Jonah Hex should be re-titled Random Images: the Movie.
-The Sheriff and all these other townsfolk are about to kill Hex, but Hex certainly doesn’t show a lack of confidence as he stares down eight men and simply says, ‘five coffins…sure you don’t need eight.’
Bad Ass Moment:
-This one is probably my favorite Jonah Hex moment. These two guys are sitting next to Hex at a bar and one of them claims Hex isn’t that tough. He stands up to approach Hex. You think it’s going to be some drawn out bad ass thing that Hex does to this guy, but in literally less than two seconds, Hex just shoots him with a gun underneath his hat. Hex is pretty much like, ‘Yea, I don’t have time for you.’