Ellen, an unknown female gunslinger rides into a small, dingy and depressing prairie town with a secret as to her reason for showing up. Shortly after her arrival, a local preacher, Cort, is thrown through the saloon doors while townfolk are signing up for a gun competition. The pot is a huge sum of money and the only rule: that you follow the rules of the man that set up the contest, Herod. Herod is also the owner, leader, and "ruler" of the town. Seems he's arranged this little gun-show-off so that the preacher (who use to be an outlaw and rode with Herod) will have to fight again. Cort refuses to ever use a gun to kill again and Herod, acknowledging Cort as one of the best, is determined to alter this line of thinking ... even if it gets someone killed ...Written by
This film is hilarious. If you found it unintentionally funny, you probably haven't seen enough westerns. Spaghetti westerns were all about modern parallels. They were "post-modern". Raimi has gone one better and made a satirical pastiche of every western there ever was. Sharon Stone as the 90's feminist gunslinger was an hysterical joke that seemed to go over everyone's head. All of the performances in the film are highly referential and brilliantly pulled off, especially Gene Hackman. Leonardo DiCaprio sticks out as undisciplined. If the film has a fault it's that it's too smart. It's a testament to miss Stone's legendary I.Q. I guess, as she is one of the producers as well. Even if it's too "wierd" for some commercial-minded viewers, there's no denying that the film is beautifully shot and fun to watch. 10 out of 10.
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