Cowboys & Aliens

Rated 3.0

This action-movie spectacle is a hybrid. In the actual playing-out, the cowboys have the upper hand. The alien monsters and the attendant special effects are scary and imposing, but not particularly impressive. The designated protagonist, one Jake Lonergan (Daniel Craig), first appears in the film looking something like a version of “The Man Who Fell to Earth,” but it quickly becomes apparent that he’s a Wild West desperado with warrior skills bordering on the superhuman. Woodrow Dolarhyde, the tyrannical rancher played by Harrison Ford, initially looms as Lonergan’s most conspicuous antagonist, but the arrival of the monsters changes all that. The frontier town and the desert settings have much more grit and physical heft than do any of the thunderous CGI battles and attacks involving the aliens. And the film is at its most engaging when it’s letting its charming array of familiar western-movie types play out their semi-comic action dramas in the genre’s basic settings. Cinemark 14, Feather River Cinemas and Paradise Cinema 7. Rated PG-13