I've Got a Million Problems and This IS One
Directed by Seth MacFarlane (who also wrote and produced the film), A Million Ways to Die in the West tells the story of a farmer who falls for a new female visitor in town. He must find courage when her husband (who is an aggressive gunman) arrives a few days later. Starring Seth MacFarlane (Ted), Charlize Theron (Snow White & The Huntsman), Liam Neeson (Taken) and Amanda Seyfried (Gone). This film has landed 4 Razzie nominations (Worst Actor, Worst Actress, Worst Director & Worst Screen Combo) and has been despised by the majority of critics. Can it really be that bad?
The plot of this film has no direction at all. You can't tell whether its going north, south, east or west! - it is that disorganised. This factor also leads to the film coming across as quite pointless and random (which is correct). You have to wait about 40 minutes before a clear story comes into play and then the last 30 minutes starts and ends a whole new story (which is the one mentioned in the synopsis of the film). What a mess! However, the film does wrap everything up quite nicely which is good as it means that doors for sequels are definitely closed.
So for a comedy, this is ok and tolerable. Like most comedy films, it fails to continue the humour in the second half of the film. It goes south so fast! In the first half, there are many humorous moments that will make you smile (but maybe no laugh out loud). However, this generally deteriorates as the film goes on - there is a really cringe worthy and disgusting scene where one of the characters 'poos' his pants for an overlong piece of time. The film got really stupid and silly as it went on which wasn't great.
I do not believe that the acting in this film deserves the Razzie nominations. I thought Charlize Theron was fun but I did question why she signed on to such a strange and messed up movie - probably just for the pay check. I had this feeling for Liam Neeson and Amanda Seyfried too - I hope the latter has a better time with Ted 2. BUT this film is just a big ego-boost for Seth MacFarlane - he directed, written, produced and stars in this flick. I just find it all a little too arrogant - he isn't even that funny! This film really proves that MacFarlane works best when he is not acting on-screen (Family Guy, Ted). Hopefully this film has taught him to stay away from on-screen performances.
This film is also quite offensive to lots of groups of people - however, a lot of comedy films take on this approach so it isn't too shocking. However, the film does objectify women a lot. Neeson's character refers to Theron's character as 'it' a lot of the time as if she is his possession. The whole plot is also based on a man wanting to have 'his girl' back. The majority of the film was like this except for one scene where Theron's character beats a man at shooting - the rest of the time, the portrayal of women in this film is very very bad.
There are some things in this film that I liked/appreciated. I thought the set design was really nice and looked quite realistic and I thought the female leads all put on good performances (the same can't be said for the males).
A Million Ways to Die in the West may as well be called 'Seth MacFarlane - The Movie' - it is all for his benefit - I don't think he even took into account that people have to watch this! With a tolerable first half that includes some laughs, unfortunately the second half is the complete opposite. I worry for Ted 2. I'd watch it again but I wouldn't recommend it.