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Just don't take it seriously
Jonkun22712 April 2004
Wow, there are a lot of bad votes for this movie here. I thought it was great. It's a Will Smith / Barry Sonnenfeld movie. You can't take it seriously. The humor is perfectly subtle and dry at times, and over the top at others. The storyline is only there to give opportunities for the jokes.

If you want a serious western, try The Magnificent Seven (or the original, 7 Samurai), Hombre, or some other classic. If you want a light-hearted evening, rent this. Probably don't buy it, but rent it.

For some reason it says that my review has to be more than 10 lines, so I'm throwing this in to make it work. Really a review for a movie like this doesn't need to be this long, but I guess I'll just comply.
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I don't understand the hate for this film!
ollie_killick1 September 2018
If you don't take it too seriously, Its a fun and entertaining film. I don't understand why people hate it so much!
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Lame bloated blockbuster
Buddy-5130 April 2000
`Wild Wild West' joins an increasingly long list of big bloated blockbusters, movies made for no possible reason beyond grabbing a quick summer buck yet which, ironically, by their very cynical and slapdash nature, utterly fail to connect with even the least demanding of audiences. The result is a multi-multi-million dollar debacle that leaves studios searching for answers and audiences shell-shocked into seeking out their entertainment along the more audacious pathway of off-Hollywood, independent filmmaking – the single positive outcome of these dull, empty enterprises.

`Wild Wild West,' like so many films before it, looks to the relics of television's bygone era for inspiration – as sad a comment as any on the dismal state of current movie creativity. As one not familiar with the original series, I cannot say what justice, or lack of justice, this homage does to its source. What is evident, judging from the results on screen, is that `Wild Wild West' is, as with most current blockbusters, top-heavy with special effects and as weak in the nether limbs as its legless villain. Straight Westerns being hopelessly out of fashion, especially for a special effects-driven summertime extravaganza, the filmmakers obviously felt that what was needed was a tongue-in-cheek approach to the material, resulting in a bizarre, but completely unfunny amalgam of fantasy and science-fiction gilded onto a Western format. The disparate styles simply fight against each other, leaving no one in the audience - neither Western nor science-fiction fans - satisfied.

The alleged plot involves the attempts by James West (Will Smith) and Artemis Gordon (Kevin Kline) to foil an evil Confederate inventor's plan to kidnap all the world's most brilliant scientists and, ultimately, terrorize the Union and President Grant into submission. This he attempts to do by creating a giant mechanized spider which is, obviously, a last ditch, desperate attempt on the part of the filmmakers to fulfill the seemingly insatiable demands of the modern audience to be dazzled by impressive special effects, no matter how inappropriate they appear in context. Here, though, the miscalculation is fatal because even the audience is wise enough to know when it is being had. Kline and Smith never achieve a palpable rapport despite the usual abundance of lame wise cracks and sarcastic asides designed to make them `hip' and `trendy' – two qualities incongruous to the setting, which again shows the lack of real commitment to the spirit of the project. There is exactly one clever moment in the film – an astonishingly creative homage to the old RCA logo – that hints at what might have been had the moviemakers been willing to really let loose their anarchic imaginations and aimed for something truly sophisticated rather than simply pasting together a series of confused, poorly written blackout sketches.

Incidentally, even some of the expensive special effects come across as surprisingly crude, especially many of the shots utilizing rear-screen projection. Hence, this film strikes out even in the one ballpark in which it might have stood a chance of emerging victorious.
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Pretty awful
twassel18 January 2000
The fun old TV series becomes a tired series of special-effects scenes. Will Smith tries, but is miscast and utterly unbelievable. (And I'm sorry, but having an African-American as a "top government agent" four years after the end of the Civil War simply cannot be made believable, despite valiant attempts to try.) Kevin Kline, a fine actor, does what he can as Artemus Gordon, but seems to be recapitulating his "In and Out" persona (Ross Martin was never that prissy.) Kenneth Branagh, as the villain, plays it so far over the top you can't even see the top from where he his. Salma Hayek is undeniably lovely, but is wasted (she's basically an afterthought). Special effects are good, plot is stupid, script is awful. As a fan of the old series, I was very disappointed.
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Should Have Been Titled "Wild Wild WORST"!
KissEnglishPasto1 August 2016
.......from Pasto,Colombia...Via: L. A. CA., CALI, COLOMBIA...and ORLANDO, FL

When you go to see a Will Smith movie, you expect it to be entertaining and fast-paced. A movie with Kevin Kline might have your expectations leaning more in the direction of cerebral, tight-knit & solid entertainment. If Salma Hayek is in it, well ....at least you expect a flick with visual appeal ...1, 2, 3 STRIKES...Wild Wild West STRIKES OUT! TALK ABOUT DROPPING THE BALL!

Will Smith, whose laid-back, street-wise- cracking veneer, usually hides a well-focused on screen intensity that is both impossible to miss or dislike...seemed to be sauntering through the film, feeling embarrassingly like a walking anachronism, considering the "Old West" backdrop! Kevin Kline, on the other hand, who usually brings a certain air of bravura to his oft-times eccentric characterizations, seemed to display a marked inability to take himself seriously when in drag, (Which, unfortunately, is during a good chunk of the film) lapsing into a pathetic sort self-parody, which, considering the script, may have been the only way he could stomach the role!

Salma Hayek, for whom no one is exactly holding their breath for her to win an Oscar as Best Actress, seemed OBSESSED with getting her lines out with as little accent as possible...Despite the fact that she was clearly cast as Mexican in this film...(As opposed to her bit part in The FACULTY!) You could almost imagine "La Mejicanita" standing there, during shooting, with her Accent/Dialogue Coach, just out of camera range! Salma...concentrate MORE on your ACTING, next time, O. K.?

As far as Barry Sonnenfled's Directing is concerned...well, here we could imagine him running around frantically, till the last minute, editing and re-editing, trying to decide exactly what it is he was trying to do with "WILD"....and of course, not even coming CLOSE to getting it right! The ONLY reason I rated the movie 3 Stars (as opposed to 0 Stars!) is because of the scope & the novelty of the Special Effects. The idea of seeing all those well orchestrated, and at times visually stunning effects against an Old West backdrop was the only refreshing and original element in the film ...If you are not a die-hard Special Effects buff, I can think of absolutely no reason on earth why you would find anything at all worth seeing in this pathetic excuse for a Blockbuster film!

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Who's responsible for this mess?
wjeffer28 June 2002
So much potential and ALL of it wasted!

We have:

1) A good director, Barry Sonnenfeld, with two great comedies to his name ("The Addams Family" and "Addams Family Values");

2) An Oscar-winning actor, Kevin Kline, well-known for his comedic work ("A Fish Called Wanda", "Soapdish") as well as dramatic ("Sophie's Choice", "The Ice Storm");

3) Another Oscar nominee, Kenneth Branagh ("Hamlet", "Henry V"), famous for directing, as well as writing and acting


First and foremost, it should be noted that just because Will Smith is popular, that doesn't mean he's good. There's something about him when he acts that makes him appear as more of a "ham" than an actor, a scene-stealer who's insecure with being the star of a film so he overacts to conceal (albeit unsuccessfully) the limitations of his acting abilities.

And for Kevin Kline and Kenneth Branagh to play second fiddle to HIM? Absolutely criminal. What's next? Jack Nicholson playing a supporting role to Pauly Shore?

Then there's the storyline - are we really supposed to believe that James West (as played by Smith, a black man) is a hero of the Civil War? Of course, the casting of Smith serves primarily as a set-up for all the racial humor (which gets old fast). Logically, though, it's an asinine premise, a fact which audiences obviously picked up on given the tepid reaction to Smith's so-called "star power" in this weak take-off on a really good television series.

Who's responsible for this mess? Maybe it's the fault of all the writers (a total of 6) for writing it, or Sonnenfeld's mess for directing it, or Jon Peters' (and Sonnenfeld's) mess for producing it, or Warner Bros.' mess for distributing it? Whose ever it is, it should just be shelved and forgotten as an embarrassing mistake.
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It just isn't good
EdRooney8 July 1999
It's that time of year. The time when Hollywood trots out it's worst of the summer. You know the drill. There's a "Godzilla" every year, somebody has to be it. "Wild Wild West" clenches the title hands down this summer, and we still have eight weeks to go!

The Will Smith phenomenon has now entered it's third phase: overwhelming ego project. Teaming with his "Men In Black" director Barry Sonnenfeld, Smith has finally teetered over the edge and released an outright mess. A film that will hang in the halls of all time bad event flicks. Should we blame Smith? I think so. "Men In Black" and "Independence Day" were gigantic hits, they even call the 4th of July "Big Willie Weekend" due to these successes. I submit that these films were hits due to the films themselves, the writing, acting, directing, and not just because of Smith. "West" is finally the film that rests on Smith's comedic shoulders alone. The truth shines through clearly. Not everything Will Smith does is funny.

Based in the television show running from 1965-1970, the simple plot tells the tale of a Civil War era federal marshal James West (Smith), who must team up with a weapons expert (Kevin Kline, at his most painfully unfunny) to thwart the evil plans of the villain, and legless, Arliss Loveless (Kenneth Branagh). Along for the ride is a giant mechanical tarantula, President Grant, and the stunning, gorgeous, lovely, and just plain old hot Salma Hayek. The plot is just a simple excuse to push the characters through endless scenes that give birth to no laughs at all. Scenes that make the audience gringe with fear, as if something wrong is with them. Fear not my good people, these are professionals up on screen, and they blew it.

The screenplay, credited to FOUR writers, has the damnedest time to make any of the jokes funny. You would not believe just how far the cast goes to make this limp material work. It's embarrassing to watch, and even more embarrassing for the actors. There is not one funny moment in the film, not even a courtesy laugh for the attempt. Dead silence. I also disapprove of the attempt to squeeze racial jokes into the mix. Yes, Will Smith is African-American, but do we need to call attention to it every five minutes? The movie would've been better served had it left the race issue alone and just played up the potential fun of the concept.

Will Smith is simply miscast as the hero. He's an amiable actor who's proven himself with stronger material. This film clearly shows just how paper thin the Smith charm can be. While Kevin Kline tries but fails as well, it's really Hayek's role that's a mystery. She's barely in the film, and when her character is explained, you come to realize that she's not apart of the story at all. Hayek has always been a fun performer with winning personality. All this movie asks of her is to be the butt (literally) of a few jokes and keep the cleavage coming. A shameful waste of talent.

Director Sonnenfeld has also been at the helm of better pictures ("Get Shorty"), but for some reason I have yet to see a truly great film directed by him. There always seems to be a spark missing from the action, like a better, funnier film was in there somewhere but he can't find it. Relying in great amounts on special effects and the considerable use of easy-to-spot green screen shots, the typical Sonnenfeld camera work is either buried under all the mayhem or just not inventive when the attempt is actually made. This is a very top-heavy production with little chance to breathe. But Sonnenfeld made this choice, he must be held accountable for it.

The movie has been through many edits, and this shows with wildly out of tune continuity and many unexplained plot twists. Also grating on the brain is Elmer Bernstein's annoying and featherweight musical score. While we have Warner Brothers shamefully trotting out it's "We pray it's as big as the 'Men In Black'" Will Smith rap tune, Bernstein provides a flat score that serves no purpose to enliven the film. The cinematography is also without color, and the catering probably sucked too.

"Wild Wild West" is the product of zero imagination. A lifeless summer film that seems to stick out even more in this unusually good movie season. I am always wary of comic westerns, and this film seals that envelope. If this is what 160 million buys you? I'll take the 3 million "South Park" any day.------------ 0
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Don't the people making these movies LIKE the original shows?
schmigrex13 July 2008
I won't add more insults -- others here have done that well enough. This movie is godawful. But I will point out two areas that seem to be staples of bad movie remakes of beloved old TV shows. First, how about getting someone to write/direct that actually liked and understood the original? That person would understand that the West-Gordon relationship was the core. In a sense, West and Gordon complimented each other to make a slick, functional crime-fighting machine: West handled the action and romance, and Gordon took care of the thinking, deception, and humor (disguises). This was a well-used TV convention -- think the Kirk-Spock-McCoy triad in Star Trek, or the great contrasty chemistry between Bill Cosby and Robert Culp in I Spy. Add a lovable villain to the mix (not an offensive atrocity like the film-Loveless) and you've got a crazy, tongue-in-cheek action classic. The filmmakers here seemingly did not know or care about the fundamentals of the original show. Not that this is necessarily a problem, but then why bother resurrecting the premise in the first place? Why not just make Will Smith a different wild west troubleshooter? The Mission Impossible franchise has the same problem.

Second, why all the emphasis on showing the principals getting to know each other? I know -- because it eats up 30% of the script, and creates conflict. But the conflict should be between West and the villain. Jim and Artie should just BE. The TV show didn't bother explaining how West met and knew Gordon, any more than Barney Miller, Mission Impossible, or 24 found it necessary to have all the main characters meet and learn to work together. They were a team with a job to do. Audiences understand this concept; having a trumped-up plot about how the heroes meet and overcome their differences is a hackneyed device that only exposes the script weaknesses present. See the film version of Dragnet (a better film, though) for another example of this unfortunate trend.

Finally, a comment on the "race" issue. Inserting content that justifies Smith-West's skin color is no more necessary than explaining Henry V's skin color when Laurence Fishburne or Andre Braugher play him on stage. Indeed, ignoring Smith's race in a movie like this one would help us all look past such issues. If a blond actor had portrayed West, nobody would have suggested a plot that explains his Norwegian background! He just would have been West, and that would be that. But color-blind casting requires courage, and could conceivably cut into the film's bottom line. So, not in this spineless script.

I seldom get mad at movies I don't like. Even The Avengers didn't anger me, though it was possibly even worse than this one. This one ticked me off REAL good. Buy the original series on DVD instead, and see how it's done right.
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Fizzling Saddles ...
majikstl7 June 2005
Buried in this god-awful disaster of a movie is a germ of an inkling of an iota of a great idea. It is not the idea of making a big blockbuster out of the great old 1960s TV show "The Wild Wild West," an idea which can, at best, be described as tiresomely uninspired. Nor is there brilliance in transforming the image of the lead character just so that they could build the role around star-of-the-moment Will Smith. But out of that horribly perverse example of Hollywood commercial packaging there is an intriguing premise, which naturally seems to have slipped past all involved without a second glance. What if the best, brightest and most intrepid government agent working in post-Civil War America was, indeed, a black man? Realistically, how would an African-American, functioning in a repressive, racist society, where even the most liberal thinker would see him as a second-class citizen, indeed, a second class human being, be able to not only outsmart the bad guys, but to impress even the skeptical good guys? It is an intriguing idea because, on the one hand, such an agent would not be suspected of being a threat and, on the other hand, he would have to overcome so many more barriers than a white man would ever face. He would be both invisible and yet stand out like the proverbial sore thumb just about anywhere he went. He'd be constantly fighting two battles. Such a film could be thrilling and funny, yet something rare: original.

"The Wild Wild West" TV show itself was all those things: it was highly derivative of both the traditional western and the then-fresh James Bond-style spy movie -- with more than a little bit of Batman-style comic book campiness kicked in -- yet it was ingenious in the way it melded those mythic genres into a one-of-a-kind series. There was never anything quite like "The Wild Wild West" and never anything since -- including this disastrous 1997 movie.

Everything about WILD WILD WEST, the movie, is just plain bad: tacky special effects; clumsy direction; an embarrassing screenplay; plus a fine, bewildered cast wasted in totally unworkable roles. But as bad as everything else is, the base rot of WWW goes directly to its reworked premise. No matter how open minded one might be, or how much one prides oneself on being socially color blind, there is just no way to honestly accept replacing Robert Conrad, TV's James West, with Will Smith. The time and the place dictate that James West be a white male -- unless, the filmmakers acknowledge and embrace the incongruity and use it for a real purpose.

Yet, the filmmakers want it both ways: the audience is expected to be able to ignore Smith's skin color, while at the same time the entire plot is based on his confrontation with a white racist trying to reestablish Confederate power and seize control of the U.S. government. How can you respect or believe in a film or filmmakers that get all preachy about the evils of racism while all along dealing with the issue with absolutely no respect for historical honesty? It is not clear if having Smith play James West as a cocky, street smart, John Shaft-style character was intended to be a joke, social commentary or just absurd politically correct pandering to black audiences, but it is clear that it does not work. The most outrageously unbelievable thing about WILD WILD WEST is not the wildly improbable sci-fi inventions but that the Smith character actually makes it to the end of the film without being lynched. It's not that the anachronism of a cocksure 20th century black man confronting 19th century bigotry isn't workable, because that very time-warp racial comedy had already been done with much greater success in the Mel Brooks classic, BLAZING SADDLES. Unlike WWW, Brooks and company realized the sheer idiocy of the premise, yet used that to mock both the black and the white stereotypes with equal glee.

Where BLAZING SADDLES is an honest farce, WILD WILD WEST is dishonest and cowardly. All involved probably thought they were being pretty daring by flaunting convention and hiring Smith, but they did not hire Will Smith the African American, they hired Will Smith the action hero movie star. They built WILD WILD WEST around Smith's race, but only to exploit his contemporary Hollywood image, even to the point of letting him create and perform a totally inappropriate (and totally bad) rap song at the end. You can sense the film exploiting both Smith's star image and his race, while not wishing to risk challenging either. The film tries to reinvent "The Wild Wild West" TV show, but the changes are literally skin deep. To really explore and compare racism in America by blending the attitudes of two different American centuries would have been too wild wild of an idea for these timid timid filmmakers.
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Very Entertaining
geneel10 August 2005
This movie is one of my favorites. I have my own copy of this movie. I have watched it several times and it is a very entertaining action/comedy/fantasy. I thoroughly enjoyed it. If you have not seen it, I recommend seeing it. Don't watch the broadcast version because they edit out some of the scenes and details that make this movie great and flow.

This movie version adds it's own style and favor to the concept originated in the TV series and can stand on its own merit. The story and dialog is clever, well written and flows well.

The chemistry between Will Smith , Kevin Cline, and Kenneth Branaugh was good. In fact the entire casting was well selected and the interaction worked. I liked the fake Victorian hi tech gadgets such as the steam powered wheelchair used by Dr. Loveless, the internal combustion powered bicycle, the custom train coach with all of it's gadgets, the bicycle flying machine, the tank, Dr. Loveless'weapon of mass destruction, Artemis Gordon's spur powered grinding machine and his numerous other inventions and disguises, to name a few. Costumes, makeup, and sets were excellent.
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Vile Mild West
GMonkey7 July 1999
The opening credits of this film were highly entertaining, and the closing credits featuring Will's WWW rap was fun as well. Everything in between was a pure, unadulterated, steaming pile of crud! I sat and marveled at the drek that was being spewed out on the screen from this supposedly Summer Blockbuster movie and was totally stupefied. I've seen bad movies before, and I've certainly seen my share of big-budget, special-effects money machines - but none was as poorly conceived as this. What makes it even more amazing is that we had actors with at least a proven track record of success. We had a director (Barry Sonnenfeld) who has managed to put together his share of successful movies. And if this weren't enough, there was a pant load of big explosions and digital effects! So what went wrong?

The script, the script, the script. It boggles my mind that this screenplay actually made it to production. The dialogue was atrocious. The attempts at humor were pathetic. The characters had about as much depth as the screen they were being projected on. Hayek's character was completely pointless, and had less than no reason to be there. The repeated exchange of racial/disabled insults between the black Jim West and the legless Dr. Loveless was shameful. It seemed that about every twenty minutes Kline's character launched into a diatribe reiterating the plot, and articulating what they were doing and why. I can only assume this was intended for the audience members who had just woken up and needed to get caught up with the "action."

My biggest regret in seeing this film is that wish I could have warned you earlier not to see it. I'm sure there are several movie fans out there right now who unwittingly fell victim to this movie, and are at this moment still lying in bed with the covers pulled over their heads, swearing they'll never go to the theater again as long as they live. Don't go see this movie, don't let your kids see this movie, don't even recommend it to people you truly despise. If, on the other hand, you have a morbid fascination with the continuing devolution of Hollywood and aren't afraid to face definitive evidence that our culture is moments away from claiming creative bankruptcy, this one is a must see.
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A Great Romp!
wyllow619 January 2012
If you loved the original TV series, then you will like this film. I am surprised at all the negative reviews of this little gem. I loved it! The chemistry between the characters is outstanding, the witty banter fun, and the ridiculousness of the sci-fi style inventions completely captures the tone of the original show. It isn't meant to be a serious film! The cinematography is well done, quite the homage to the genre, and the goofy half-man bad guy is perfect! The pace is fast and keeps your attention. It is a MUCH better film that the boring recent release Cowboys and Aliens. That was a dud. Wild Wild West is lively adventure that is completely enjoyable! It is a fun film. Those who hate it have either never seen the original TV show (or have and didn't get it) or they have lost touch with their inner child.
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Great big fun!
Terry-326 July 1999
First off, understand that anyone who hates this movie is mean and can't have fun. There is nothing wrong with something that's popular. I don't like hearing about how people make careers out of making fun of things that other people like whether it's Will Smith, Ricky Martin, or some other band or movie that a large group of people like. "Wild Wild West" is a fun movie. It has everything an outgoing person could want, action, comedy, great cotumes, sets, special effects, and a good story. The original Jim West was white, but the movie pulled off having a black Jim West. They also put an interesting story behind him since black people weren't respected by stupid white people back in the 1800's. I happen to be a big fan of Will Smith, so of course he was just as great in this movie as he was in "Independance Day," "Men in Black," or "Bad Boys." Kevin Kline as Artemus Gordon was equally good. He was really funny. He and Smith made a great duo. They had great one liners together. I was mad that I was mad that I and a few other people were the only people laughing in the theater full of leeches. I really have to give credit to Kenneth Branaugh for his performance as Dr. Arliss Loveless. I knew him as a serious actor, and this is the first comical thing he's done. He's the third best villain of this year next to Darth Maul in "The Phantom Menace," and Agent Smith in "The Matrix." The scenes of action were exiting.

I wish there were more shootouts, but John Woo didn't direct this. (NOT A FORM OF CRITICISM) I also liked the fight scenes where Will Smith beats up a bunch of guys in a warehouse, saloon, and inside the giant mechanical tarantuala. Anyways, I liked this movie. It was worth it.
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What a sad waste...
Chris Beilby20 February 2002
Back in the 60s, The Wild, Wild West, staring Robert Conrad and Russ Martin was one of the best shows of it's time, a interesting mixture of Science Fiction, Fantasy, Gadget Spy films, and light hearted satire. A favorite of mine, I've long enjoyed the show. So naturally, I was looking forward to the big screen adaption, even though it did star Will Smith (Sorry, Will, but you're no Robert Conrad.)

The movie had all the ingredients needed to make a good film: An excellent cast (Kevin Klein, Ken Branaugh, Selma Hayek, even Smith,) an excellent, proven director in Barry Sonnefeld, and a proven genre... Rather, it had all the ingredients that it needed except one... It had the worst script possible.

I've always been wary of any project that was written by committee, and this film is one project that proves why. The excellent cast, crew, and effects of this film were wasted on one of the worst screenplays I've ever seen. The clever (if pulp inspired) stories of the original series are replaced by tepid attempts at comedy which even Smith, who normally is very funny, can't pull off. Kenneth Branaugh succeeds at nothing other than managing to eat the scenery, unable to do anything else, since his lines are so bad. Klein is saddled with the role of Smith's straight man, something that he's just too damn funny to be. As for the effects, like I said, they were spectacular, but the problem is that they seem to be the 'be all and end all' of the movie, instead of working for the story (such as there was in this case.) The simple fact is that they overpower the film.

I guess, if you are a die hard Will Smith fan who has never seen the original series, you might like this one. But for fans of the old series, avoid it, and watch reruns, or else one of the two other shows in the genre, 'Legend' or 'The Adventures of Brisco County Junior.'
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Hideously Awful
Byers20 April 2000
As a fan of the original TV show, I was really rooting for "Wild Wild West" to succeed. Imagine my disappointment then, when it turned out to be a complete failure, a dud of a movie, a huge disaster; in a word, it just plane sucked. There were so many mistakes and errors made by the so-called "filmmakers" that I'm not even sure where to start. First, casting Will Smith. Unless your willing to completely disregard the history of the late nineteenth century and make race a complete non-factor (which is not what the writers chose to do) there is no way to sell a black James West. Hell, the giant mechanical spider was more realistic than a black army officer in the post Civil War army. Don't get me wrong, I love Will Smith, but because he is black this role was just not right for him. Second, the writing. Four people are credited with the screenplay, and God only knows how many others "polished" the script along the way. Yet, with all this talent involved, the end result is hideous. It reminds me of the old maxim that a thousand monkeys randomly typing on typewriters would produce Shakespeare sooner or later; well in this case, they had a lot of writers carefully and selectively typing on typewriters, and they didn't get within a parsec of Shakespeare. The story and characters were all wrong (they needed to look at the original show, which got it right), the dialogue is truly pathetic (I got real sick of West and Gordon saying "We have to save OUR president" "That monster is after OUR president") and NONE of the jokes work. The absolute lowest point was when the writers tried to milk humor from a lynching; perhaps in their next effort, the writers will find the humor in the gas chambers of Auschwitz, or the killing fields of Bosnia. The musical score was also a complete failure; it was flat, unimaginative, boring and unengaging. The music should have been building suspense, providing a rousing theme, etc. Except, about all it provided was a headache and all it roused was my ire. "Wild Wild West" is the posterchild for the hallow, overhyped Hollywood movie that is supposed to be a guaranteed blockbuster (see also "Judge Dredd" and "The Avengers"), and it truly deserves the heaps of scorn and criticism which have been dumped on it. I can only pray that Smith's next project can restore his now tarnished reputation, and that Barry Sonnenfeld never makes another movie again as long as he lives.
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Yes, it's absolutely horrible (I'd have said it's a Vile Vile Mess, but I bet it's already been taken).
Li-12 December 2002
1 out of 10

Wow. I'd heard so many awful things about this movie. One ugly remark came rolling after another until the point that it'd pretty much taken its toll on me and I was sure I'd end up liking the movie just on the pure basis of the belief that it couldn't be that bad. It is that bad, and deserves every bit of the harsh criticism poured upon it. Wild Wild West is easily tied for the worst summer blockbuster I've seen in, well, possibly forever (the other one would be Tomb Raider). But at least it's still a smidgen better than Patch Adams.

What's the story? Will Smith and Kevin Kline (who have zero comic chemistry)(actually more like somewhere in the negatives, since they actually suck the fun out of the action) are secret service agents in the 1870's, trying to protect Ulysses S. Grant from a madman named Dr. Loveless (Kenneth Branagh, embarrassing himself to colossal extents). What we get is one of the most awfully unfunny movies in existence. As a matter of fact, what kept in my seat was wondering if the jokes could possibly get worse. And yes, they do. On a morbid level, there's some fascination to be had with what director Barry Sonnenfeld believes is good humor. The action's too sparse to ever be thrilling, the editing is incompetent (anybody else wonder how that one "indestructible" henchman suddenly met his demise at the end?), and the special effects MIGHT satisfy little kids. If you actually watch this movie in a crowd, it's the kind that induces blushes on whoever suggested watching this movie in the first place.
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What else is there really left to say?
matte72326 July 2000
You know after I finished watching this movie I thought to myself that this script had to have been written by 8 year olds! I can just imagine a group of second grade boys sitting around saying.... "Hey I got a great idea for a movie! Lets get that cool guy from Fresh Prince to play in a western and have some guy make cool gadgets and have alot of big machines like an 80ft spider blow up stuff and lets have some hot girl there so we can look at her breasts and show her butt for a second AWESOME!" I mean come on! This is total crap. Don't take my word for it though, just check out the horrible rating it received and read the other comments. I would comment on all the things I found wrong with this film but I dont want to sound like a broken record. I feel my fellow IMDB users have pretty much covered all the bases.
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Waste of Time
Franky4 July 1999
Just another example of Hollywood excess gone for naught. This film is so bad that anyone who pays to see it should have their head examined. I'm sorry but sometimes hollywood execs should spend 100 million dollars on five smaller movies than one extravagent piece of garbage.

Kevin Kline, who is one of my favorite actors, did not seem to care in this film. Did he just phone it in? As for the rest of the acting, well, Mr. Kline was the best.

There were so many problems with the film I cannot even list them here. The first of many was that the plot just never interested you. Then, the special effects didn't work either.

Oh well, I'm sure Will Smith will make a comeback and this will not effect his bankability.
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Wild Wild Flop (insert loud bass sounds here-BumBum-bum-bum)
MovieAddict201625 November 2002
Oh, really, how could anyone MAKE a film like this? It has to be one of the worst films I've seen in a long, long time. Kevin Kline: you must be desperate. Will Smith: You too.

1/5 stars-

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The European audience will love it
bernd_hohmann28 August 2003
The European audience will love it because it is science fiction from the perspective of the victorian age - just like Jules Verne did.

If you dislike sci-fi or clever plots (at least: clever enough for Hollywood), keep away from this film and get a massive load of beer which satisfies your need better.
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the worst movie I have ever seen
acerimmer200524 June 2005
If you are going to make a movie based on a much loved TV show have some respect for the show,this movie has none.

It takes a show that on the whole was not that bad and turns it into a really bad joke.

Will Smith as James West?! James West is supposed to be a western James Bond is there an Actor that looks less like a western James Bond then Will Smith.

He was only cast because of his name power at the time and it show he is not ever trying in this movie,he just keeps yelling his lines at the screen.

The rest of the cast is so awful i don't even want to talk about them. The thing that makes it worse is that they have all done good work in the past that is good but here they don't even seem to be trying.

Then there is the direction. Has there ever been a more incompetent director than Berry Summerfield?

The "Plot" is just awful.

Doctor Loveless(who in the TV show was a great character with Richard Keel as a henchman)is now a guy in a wheelchair who wants to use a gaint robot spider(That there is no way he could build in the 1860s)to kidnap the President and take over the west. Never mind that the ONE spider can only be in ONE place at once and that all you would have to do to stop it would be shoot it with a buch of cannons and that the vice president would take over for him and Grant would not be able to surrender to him,this is a Will Smith Movie.

Don't even get me started on the cross dressing scene.

Every piece of "plot" just leads to a mindless scene that is only there so that Warner Brothers can show you that they know what CGI is.

In short this is the worst movie I have ever seen,and it makes the Awful Men in Black 2 look like a classic.

I can't believe this made more money than the Classic South park movie on it opening weekend.
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Painful with a really bad aftertaste
mhi14 September 2000
There have been remakes of really good movies or series that either are a viable continuation of a good thing or are good in their own right. This, however, is neither. This film is a slap in the face of anyone who goes to see it on account of its association with the Wild, Wild West series from the sixties.

I'm not anti-Will Smith. On the contrary, I really enjoyed both MIB and ID4; but the guy is entirely out of place here. The jokes are lame, the one-liners sick. Even the effects and plot are not what you would expect. There is no chemistry between the characters.

As this movie neither picks up well on anything the series had, nor has any real charisma of its own it leaves you wondering how anyone could have the gall to use Jim West's name for such a plain pain.

If you haven't seen this film yet, try to keep it that way... Try to catch a rerun of the series instead - you'll be happier.

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Wild, Wild Waste.
Cyclops-136 September 2000
Now when I went and saw GONE IN SIXTY SECONDS, I thought I was seeing a movie about the audience of Wild, Wild West. This movie was one of the worst of 1999. After all of the great movies that came out in the year 1997 and 98, I thought for sure that 1999 would be great, but I should have known since I really didn't see a lot of good action trailers for 1999 movie season.

The writing was bad and as far as I'm concerned, if you saw Will Smith in ID4 and MIB and in Bad Boys, you've seen Wild Wild West. He's practically playing the same characters in every movie he is in and I'm getting sick of it. That's one of the reasons why I couldn't stand this movie. And I some how knew Salma Hayek would appear nude in the film the first time I saw her on screen and realized that this movie was going no where. Sure enough that happened later in the film and I'm like, GROW UP PEOPLE!!!!!! This exploitation of females in the movies has got to stop! When Smith did his nude scene in the film, it was done in a way that you wouldn't be able to see much if not anything at all. Not that I want to see Smith nude because I don't. And I don't want to see her either because I respect females in the movie and would rather not have to look at them in that form. It's being down right disrespectful.

I didn't like the constant fighting between West and Gordon. I have seen the original series, and I can tell you that when it came down to who was in charge, West was. Did West flaunt it? No. Why? Because who was there to bail West out of trouble? Gordon was. So we have an equilibrium here. I liked the casting of Kline in the movie as Gordon, but all in all, I didn't like the chemistry.

The plot was bad, the jokes were bad, the egos were being tossed all over the place and wanted my money back. When I go to a movie I really enjoy, I feel as though it was done so with money well spent. With this movie, I felt like my money had disappeared and was gone in sixty seconds. But hey, WWW was much better that Battlefield Earth.
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How can words describe this?
doodle-bug27 July 2000
This finally showed on HBO and ugh, I was not even prepared how terrible this film was. I kept watching like a deer staring at an oncoming semi, but the movie got worse and worse. The characters were horrible, especially the Brit (Kenneth Branagh) with the horrid southern accent.

Don't waste your time watching this one.
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