March 29, 2017

The Quick and the Dead

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All the guys are back this week, so it's time for a movie review...of the Ollllllllld West!

This week, the guys sat down to watch the Sam Raimi-directed Western classic, The Quick and the Dead, starring Gene Hackman, Sharon Stone, Russell Crowe, Leonardo DiCaprio, Lance Henriksen, Keith David, Gary Sinise, and about a billion other great actors.

But this...THIS is the money crowd.
The town of Redemption is kind of a sketchy place to be. It's under the protection of a man named Harod (Hackman), who takes about half of what everybody makes to allow them to live there.. Naturally, the townsfolk aren't particularly happy about it, but they are in a small town in the middle of nowhere, so choices appear to be limited.

That said, the people of Redemption just want to live their lives, have families, and maybe die at the ripe old age of 36. (It is the Old West, after all.) And things get a little less comfortable when the town holds its annual gunfighting contest, which brings in all manner of unpleasant folks, including a self-proclaimed shooting superstar and mullet enthusiast named Ace Hanlon (Henriksen), a hired gun named Sgt. Cantrell (David), an escaped convict named Scars (Mark Boone Junior), a seemingly unkillable Native American named Spotted Horse (Jonothon Gills), a general criminal type named Dog (Tobin Bell), and a super-rapey pedophile named Dred (Kevin Conway), who has his eye on the young daughter of the town's bartender (Pat Hingle).

Another out-of-towner (Stone as Ellen, the Lady) arrives just in time for the contest, but she has a purpose other than winning the money; The Lady wants to kill Harod because he was responsible for the death of her father (Sinise) when she was a child.

She should be safe as long as no one
gives him his throwin' phone!
A local, other than Harod, wants a piece of the action, as well. It's The Kid (DiCaprio), who is also trying to satisfy his rage boner by killing Harod, but it's really a desperate cry for attention from a son to his father. Of course, if it turns out that the son and the father face-off against each other, it'll most likely just be a cry of "Ow! You shot me, you dick!" or something similar.

One final contestant is brought in, although he seems somewhat unwilling to participate. Harod's men had to go all the way to Mexico to hunt down and bring back Cort, the Preacher (Crowe), because Harod has some rage wood of his own. It seems he and Preacher used to ride together back in the day, and Harod feels that Preacher left him in a bit of a lurch. He forces Preacher into the contest, but tells him that he will only get one bullet per gunfight, so he won't be inclined to shoot his way out of town. Preacher insists that he isn't going to fight, but still goes gun shopping with Harod. Kind of a weird relationship there. The rest of his time is spent chained to the fountain in the center of town, and arguing with The Lady. The sexual tension between the two of them is just...just...just almost there.

No, not weirdo.
The contest begins, and everybody starts challenging everybody else. First among the fights is Harod and Ace Hanlon. Although Hanlon's mullet is at its Joe Dirt-est, it is no defense against Harod's cold, calculated cragginess. Similarly, The Kid's first fight is pretty quickly handled. And, although he is fast, he's also an arrogant asshole, and one hopes he gets his in the end.

When it's time for Preacher to face his first opponent, he says he won't fight. However, when his opponent draws, he quickly changes his stance and takes the man down, but only wounding him. The Lady's first fight goes the same way, except for the not-wanting-to-shoot-anybody part, and she dispatches Dog pretty quickly.

Ace Hanlon: The Home of Mullety Goodness!
A bunch of other fights with secondary characters happen, and the list of contestants dwindles. And then Harod has to face Cantrell, whom Harod believes the people of the town hired to come and kill him. Harod decides to change the rules (he can do that, being the guy who pretty much owns the town), and says that a victory can only be called now when the opponent is dead, not just wounded. As an example, he kills Cantrell in a rather extensive way, and moves on.

Kills him thoroughly, yet in a photogenic way.
Unsure that she can kill anybody but Harod, The Lady is wary about staying in the contest, until she hears Dred having his way with the bartender's daughter. She's ready to throw down, and they meet in the street and run at each other, firing their guns, until she shoots Dred right in the dick. Seriously. That happened. But when she returns inside, he takes another shot at her, and she finished him off, which kinda of freaks her out, so she decides to leave.

Preacher has to face Spotted Horse in his next fight and, just like he insisted, Spotted Horse turns out to be incredibly difficult to kill. So much so that, after Preacher uses his one and only bullet to shoot the big man directly in the chest, he finds himself in a predicament when Spotted Horse gets back up and starts shooting at him. He starts begging for another bullet, and the only person who can help him is a blind boy (Jerry Swindall), who finds the right kind in his box of random bullets that he keeps around (doesn't everybody?), and, at the last possible second, Preacher shoots Spotted Horse in the head, taking him down for good. Harod, now happy that he has caused Preacher to condemn his own soul, welcomes him back.

The contest comes down to the Final Four: The Lady versus Preacher, and The Kid versus Harod. The Lady and Preacher argue about which of them will shoot the other. Neither wants to do it, but when The Lady tells him she won't shoot him, Preacher points out that, while he doesn't want to, he will definitely shoot her.

But she was totally down for
shooting Rapey McRapeface here.
Meanwhile, Harod and The Kid have their own argument, as Harod wants The Kid to quit the contest because he doesn't want to have to kill him. The Kid, however, refuses, because he feels it's the only way Harod will respect him.

Will Preacher actually shoot The Lady? Will The Kid beat Harod? Will there be a climactic series of explosions that pretty much invalidate the results of the contest up to this point? You'll have to listen to find out!

Larry, still smarting from viewing MANOS: The Hands of Fate a few episodes back, chose this one to remember what an actual good movie was like. He was pretty pleased with his choice, and even managed to share some interesting information, despite a really bad toothache. That's dedication! He was also glad to be doing the cast and box office stuff again. The others were glad for it, too.

Derek was sick, but that didn't stop him from being fascinated by the way Sam Raimi used his signature unusual shooting style to great effect. He also thought Sharon Stone looked like a badass...but, you know, a hot badass. He, like the others, was also mesmerized by Ace Hanlon's astounding mullet. It really is majestic in its mullety-ness. He also thinks that all of this shooting and stuff could have been avoided if some had just killed Harod early in the film.

Jake was healthy and not in any sort of pain at all. In fact, he was even on vacation, but the guys only held it against him a little bit. He feelt that the people of Redemption really didn't ask for all this horse shit. They just wanted to do their thing and live their lives. Unfortunately, that was not going to make for a very interesting movie, so it had to happen this way. He is also amazed by Raimi's shooting style and how well it adapts to various genres.

So shine up your spurs, put on your gunbelt, and listen to this week's episode!