Starring: Seth McFarlane, Charlize Theron, Liam Neeson, Giovanni Ribisi, Sarah Silverman, Neil Patrick Harris, Amanda Seyfried
Directed by: Seth McFarlane
Synopsis: As a cowardly farmer begins to fall for the mysterious new woman in town, he must put his new-found courage to the test when her husband, a notorious gun-slinger, announces his arrival.
Hmmm, a strange one this. My only other ‘Seth McFarlane’ experience comes from watching Ted, which is far superior to this. I’ve never seen Family Guy although I know it is beloved by millions. I can’t say McFarlane’s breed of comedy particularly excites me but I did laugh a few times throughout A Million Ways… without ever being in danger of busting my sides.
In this, McFarlane stars as a loser farmer in the vicious, unforgiving Wild West. He is scared of everything and is desperate to get out before something or someone ends up killing him (hence the title). He doesn’t reckon on meeting the beautiful Charlize Theron though. Which is great until he realises that her current beau is the meanest cowboy in the West, played by Liam Neeson.
The best parts of the film are when McFarlane and Theron are riffing together. They have a great onscreen chemistry that really helps the film along. Other characters seem to come and go with no real rhyme or reason but those two are two welcome constants. Some of the jokes fall towards the lame fart and dick jokes far too prevalent in modern comedy but s lot of the physical comedy is far more rewarding.
Neeson is OK as the baddie and the likes of Harris, Ribisi and Silverman offer good support. In fact the marriage between the equally wet Ribisi and Silverman’s prostitute is one of the funnier moments.
I can’t say that this film would turn me onto Seth McFarlane’s stuff in any big way, I thought Ted was more laugh out loud funny, but I did have a few laughs throughout the movie so it must have done at least half its job well. As said before, the chemistry between McFarlane and Theron is the main lure, and it will be interesting to see if they work together again on any future projects.