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October 11, 2012

Movie Review: Cole Younger and the Black Train (2012)

I've never been a big fan of Westerns. It takes a really good one to grab my attention. On the same note, a really bad one will also get my attention. Unfortunately, that's what happened with Cole Younger and the Black Train. I love Michael Madsen. I could watch that guy whittle. Honestly, I would rather see that than this. In spite of Madsen's inclusion in the movie, Cole was an abysmal mess.

In a movie that borrows from history, we see the Cole Younger / Jesse James gang as they take on the town lawmen and a few vigilante volunteers. Oddly, the background story revolves around a man named Emmit, who pulls in on a black ghost train. Emmit is a grim reaper, for lack of a better term. Younger saw him as a kid when his sister died, and he's been haunted ever since.

I knew I was in trouble when I saw the trailers on the beginning of the DVD. They all starred Madsen in some way, all came from the same production company that brings us Cole, and many of them looked like they were shot on Hi-8, which is very outdated at this point.

It wasn't the quality of the video that turned me off, even when it changed from one cut to the next as though two different types of camera were used. The script was bad. Most of the acting was worse. The concept was just not clear. I wish it had been, but there was no chance of that. If I see another title from this production company, I'll head in the other direction. There's nothing good to say about Cole. Even the free download of the title track isn't worth your time.

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