3:10 to Yuma (2007)

3:10 to Yuma (2007)

Director: James Mangold
Starring: Russell Crowe, Christian Bale, Ben Foster

A rancher joins a posse escorting an outlaw, facing many perils along the way.

One of the things I liked about the original 3:10 to Yuma was the sense of tension you have leading up to the final move to the train. Violence was used sparingly so when it happened, it was that much more effective. This movie, on the other hand, starts out with this insane shootout on an armored stage equipped with at least half a dozen armed men and a frickin' Gatling gun. There's fairly consistent violence throughout and as a result, there's no suspense whatsoever. They do change some things up from the original story, so it's not all a forgone conclusion for people who've seen the original. While Van Heflin was plausible as a determined homesteader, Christian Bale isn't quite as believable in the role, but he's there for his action chops. Russell Crowe, however, proves to be Glenn Ford's match in the portrayal of Ben Wade. Also, as far as additions go, I liked Peter Fonda as the tough marshal Byron McElroy. Wade's gang is a much more colorful assortment here and more time given to them does develop their characters better, particularly Charlie Prince. I wasn't a big fan of making Dan's elder son (called William in this version) a resentful tagalong, but it puts a new spin on Dan's motivation. All my complaints aside, I think it's worth seeing for the most part, but fans of the original are likely to be disappointed.

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