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artisanal film reviews | by maryann johanson

trailer break: ‘Appaloosa’

Take a break from work: watch a movie trailer…


It’s Unforgiven meets Shanghai Noon… without the laughs!

This is the second movie from Ed Harris as a director (after 2000’s Pollack), and — kidding aside — it looks like my kind of movie, full of action and emotion and, well, Viggo Mortensen. I have to admit, though, that the first thing that brought this flick onto my radar was seeing this poster in the multiplex recently:

And my first thought was, Who the hell is that cadaver on the left? And it turns out it’s Viggo. He doesn’t look that pallid in the trailer, so I’m guessing someone decided that a corpselike Mortensen would somehow sell the film better, and they did a bit of Photoshopping on him. Still: that’s weird, isn’t it?

Appaloosa opens September 19 in New York, Los Angeles, and Toronto, everywhere October 3.



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  • Kathy A

    Whoever did that poster doesn’t appreciate the beauty that is the Viggo.

    I was just thinking yesterday about how cool it is that so many of the LotR actors have had their careers take off, or at least accelerate, after those films. Viggo was on the verge of quitting acting completely before getting called to fill in as Aragorn, several of the Aussie/NZ actors have now come to Hollywood (Miranda Otto, Karl Urban, David Wenham, and now John Noble is in the new series “Fringe”), and Elijah Wood has become the Indie Film Dramatic Actor of choice for every new director looking to land a big star for their tiny film.

  • Drew Ryce

    The whole thing has a Wyatt Earp/Tombstone sort of feel to it.
    The cadaverous Viggo may be meant to invoke the Doc Holliday legend (consumptive gunman side kick to Wyatt Earp).

    Based solely on the trailer it reminded me of “Warlock” (Henry Fonda/Anthony Quinn western not the time traveling witch movie).

    This makes some marketing sense. A nod to the lovers of classic westerns that can spot the homage and count on the lovers of gorgeous Viggo to show up if he spent the film in a full body cast.

  • Shadowen

    I dunno; the color in general on that poster looks a bit washed-out.

    As I recall, Viggo showed up at the Cannes festival for, I think it was, A History Of Violence in his Appaloosa mustaches. To find out that it took this long for the movie come out interests me.

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