Yesterday we got our first look at director Antoine Fuqua’s remake of the western classic, The Magnificent Seven, after some photos surfaced of actors Denzel Washington and Chris Pratt standing around, looking like they were playing dress-up in an old western town. The pictures didnt do much to assuage the skeptics who thought the film would be just another tired western remake, but thankfully, a teaser trailer has dropped and the whole thing seems raucous and fun.
Washington stars as Sam Chisolm, a lone gunslinger hired to protect a dusty town from a rich, evil industrialist played by Peter Sarsgaard. To help drive the bad dudes out, Chisolm puts together a rag-tag group of similar low-lifes played by Pratt, Ethan Hawke, Vincent D’Onofrio, Byung-Hun Lee, Manuel Garcia-Rulfo, and Martin Sensmeier to rid the town of any unwanted trouble.
In geek parlance, it’s kind of like Suicide Squad only without the DC comics fanboy baggage. For snooty film school types, it’s notable, because it’s a remake of director John Sturges’s 1960 classic of the same name, which starred bona fide macho actors like Yul Brynner, Steve McQueen, and Charles Bronson. Anybody quick to be offended that Hollywood would go and remake their dad’s favorite movie that shows up on TCM every so often should be reminded that Sturges’s movie was itself a remake of celebrated Japanese director Akira Kurosawa’s Seven Samurai. Sturges’s movie would go on to spawn three sequels and a TV series.
Take a look at the trailer for Fuqua’s update below:
Fuqua’s film has a lot of western cinematic history to live up to, but it’s trying to be its own stylish action-based movie. Plus, the way Washington and Pratt spout off their lines in the whole “Took a job, looking for some men to join me,” exchange is just charming as hell. The slick visuals also look great, but the vaguely Black Keys-type blues might turn some people off, though it’s most likely just going to be a part of the marketing, not the actual film. Overall Fuqua, who has worked with Washington before in movies like Training Day and The Equalizer, seems to know what he’s doing with this stacked cast, and it’ll be worth checking out when the movie is released later this year.
Here’s the official synopsis:
“With the town of Rose Creek under the deadly control of industrialist Bartholomew Bogue (Peter Sarsgaard), the desperate townspeople employ protection from seven outlaws, bounty hunters, gamblers and hired guns – Sam Chisolm (Denzel Washington), Josh Farraday (Chris Pratt), Goodnight Robicheaux (Ethan Hawke), Jack Horne (Vincent D’Onofrio), Billy Rocks (Byung-Hun Lee), Vasquez (Manuel Garcia-Rulfo), and Red Harvest (Martin Sensmeier). As they prepare the town for the violent showdown that they know is coming, these seven mercenaries find themselves fighting for more than money.”
The Magnificent Seven opens in theaters on September 23.