Written by / 4/25/2013 / 1 Comment / , , , ,

SAM RAIMI'S THE QUICK AND THE DEAD

year: 1994 cast: Sharon Stone, Gene Hackman, Russell Crowe, Leonardo DiCaprio rating: ***1/2
The Spaghetti Western gets a special treatment by director Sam Raimi. The so-called “Man With No Name” is a woman and, like all Clint Eastwood’s characters in the Sergio Leone series, she does have a name.

Sharon Stone, as a mysterious stranger Ellen, enters a small town and takes part in a contest of the fast draw. Each person, ranging from cutthroats to convicts to the law, takes part in what eventually becomes a do-or-do match along the dusty main street.
Sharon Eastwood Stone
Gene Hackman steals the show as the nefarious Sheriff Herod, mixing diabolical prowess with a sorrowfully vacant melancholy. Running the town with a cool iron fist, Herod keeps his eye on Stone and especially his prisoner, Cort... Russell Crowe in a slowburn performance... a maligned preacher with a past.

The duels are fantastic – each character’s personality introduced in a Graphic Novel fashion, and their impending fate means more than mere body count. These include Lance Hendriksen as a self-promoting/self-proclaimed fastest gun; Keith David as a mercenary; and an Indian claiming no bullet can kill him. This contest provides competitive intrigue that we can always fall back on, liken to the Bruce Lee classic ENTER THE DRAGON.

The eclectic contestant's aside, we’re full aware who the final four will be: Ellen, Herod, Cort, and a very spirited Leonardo DiCaprio as “The Kid,” a bragging youngster with an energetic courage exceeding common sense. And although Sharon Stone does a good job as the scowling figurehead, the real stuff centers on Hackman and Crowe, both connected more than the revenge-driven heroine wants to believe.
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1 comment:

  1. This has always been one of my secret pleasures of Sam Raimi's filmography. And it's always the film I think about when I think of DiCaprio (the first movie I ever saw him in).

    It may not be my favorite Pre-Spider-Man Raimi movie (Darkman will always be my favorite Raimi movie, yes even over Evil Dead 2 AND Army of Darkness), but I really loved this movie.

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