‘The Magnificent Seven’ lives up to its name


“The Magnificent Seven” is a remake of the 1960 film, which is considered one of the greatest movies of all time. It was selected in 2013 for preservation in the United States National Film Registry by the Library of Congress as being “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant” according to the website.

The 1960 film is itself a remake of the 1954 Japanese film “Seven Samurai” which is also a critically acclaimedmovie in Rotten Tomatoes polls. 

“The Magnificent Seven” has been parodied countless times. It’s score is so iconic, it has become synonymous with westerns. This remake has quite the legacy to live up to. While it’s not magnificent, the film does have well-shot action with incredibly charismatic actors, even if the film is a little too dark for its own good.

When a corrupt mining company attempts to force a small village on their land, the recently widowed Emma Cullen (Haley Bennett) hires bounty hunter Sam Chisolm (Denzel Washington) to help protect them. Chisolm recruits six others, a gambler named Josh Faraday (Chris Pratt), a confederate veteran named Goodnight Robicheaux suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (Ethan Hawke), Goodnight’s friend Billy Rocks (Byung-hun Lee), tracker Jack Horne (Vincent D’Onofrio), Mexican outlaw Vasquez (Manuel Garcia-Rulfo) and a Native American archer Red Harvest (Martin Sensmeier). These seven have to turn the villagers into an army in order to fight the bandits and gunman hired by the mining company.  

“The Magnificent Seven” was directed by Antoine Fuqua, who is best known for the 2001 crime drama “Training Day,” which also starred Denzel Washington and Ethan Hawke. Fuqua uses certain lighting to give the movie a washed out look. It emulates the old western look and creates a “high noon” look.

The film was written by Nic Pizzolatto and Richard Wenk. Pizzolatto is most known for creating the HBO crime drama “True Detective.” The movie has a problem where it tries too hard to be dark and gritty. Almost all the heroes are introduced murdering other people. It’s unnecessary and doesn’t add anything to the film.

The film also adds a bit of backstory between Chisolm and the owner of the mining company, Bartholomew Bogue (Peter Sarsgaard). It’s barely brought up and it messes with the point of the original film. “The Magnificent Seven” and “Seven Samurai” are about seven different men learning to come together and discover something bigger than themselves. By adding the angle of revenge, it loses the message. The personal angle was just unneeded.