All-but-Irish Men in Ireland and Non-American Cowboys

P.S. I Love You was exactly as it should be: wonderful. Funny and sad and full of gorgeous guys. I mean, I knew Gerard Butler was hot, but then getting Jeffrey Dean Morgan as a bonus was perfect. The only thing a little weird was that it was set in New York. K. said that it’s an Hollywood law that RomComs can only play in NY but honestly, the ending seemed a little strained because of that. I can only assume that Hilary Swank can’t fake an Irish accent. Interestingly enough, neither Gerard Butler nor Jeffrey Dean Morgan are from Ireland (GB: Glasgow and JDM: Seattle). At least for someone like me (non-english-native and never been to Ireland), their Irish accents were very believable.
Richard LaGravenese brought us a perfect chick flick. (This time there’s not too much pathos as in Horse Whisperer or the we’ve-all-seen-that-before effect from Freedom Writers…)
K. will lend me the book tomorrow, can’t wait to read it.

Before I start talking about 3:10 to Yuma, a little disclaimer: I was never a Western fan. I never watched the classics and am not that interested to do so in the future. Therefore, I might lack a little understanding for the genre and the cultere within. But the ending just left me puzzled.
(Warning, spoiler ahead!)
Why the hell did Ben Wade (Russell Crowe) help Dan Evans (Christian Bale) in the end? I mean, you are in the middle of strangling someone then he tells you he’s never been a hero but can’t let his kids know and suddenly you stop and make him a hero? That just doesn’t really make sense to me.
(Spoiler end.)
Maybe, apart from a lack of understanding for Westerns, I also have a severe lack of testosterone to understand them anyway.
K., who has a profound education in Spaghetti-Westerns, told me that it cited a lot of movies (like exploding horses and the such). Therefore, it gets a little more credit but altogether there was too much “huh?” for me.
Things I enjoyed about it: Well, watching Christian Bale (looks and talent) and Russell Crowe (looks and I know there is some talent buried deep down somewhere) is always a treat. Luke Wilson‘s brief appearance (not necessarily because of him but because of the whole scene). Doc Potter (Alan Tudyk‘s character). Ben Foster‘s acting (seriously, this guy knows how to act. 10 minutes in the movie and I already thought: Psycho! Judging from his performance in X-Men: The Last Stand I wouldn’t have thought that possible).
Interesting: Neither Christian Bale nor Russell Crowe are Americans (CB: somewhere in Wales and Russell Crowe: Wellington [New Zealand, damn, I thought he was from Australia… It’s probably good, he’ll never read this blog…]).
The whole thing is based on a short story by Elmore Leonard who I thought I didn’t know and K. mistook for some other writer. A little research shows: not only have I seen movies which were written by him or based on one of his novels (Get Shorty, Jackie Brown, Out of Sight) but I actually have a book by him (Mr. Paradise). I can only excuse this by blaming, first, the size of my private library and second, the fact that I haven’t read it yet and third, that I am a bad human being.

I’m sorry that this isn’t very coherent but there are really many things worth noting in this film and it’s one of those which get better the more you think about it. I really enjoyed everything up to the ending, I think it was beautifully done (but James Mangold already proved himself before so that was no suprise) and well played. It didn’t shrink from the violence nor did they have to show everything in all gory details. But I’m no Western fan and this film won’t change my mind. Maybe I will understand the ending someday but until then I’m afraid it’s number three of worst Christian Bale movies (Number 2 being Reign of Fire and Number 1: American Psycho [so much potential – great book, great actor – just going to waste]). I’d only recommend it to male Western fans.


  1. I have to agree with you for the most part on PS I Love You. Great movie! But once you read the book, I think you’ll understand why Hillary needed no Irish accent. It was a wonderful movie that I forced my hubby to attend with me. He liked it too as it ended up!

    As for 3:10 to Yuma………..well, I grew up on John Wayne movies and Louis L’Amour western paperbacks, so loved this one. It was not hard to understand any of it, but that is because I was dipped, soaked and branded with such stuff! It’s a keeper!

    BTW, Gerard Butler (PSILY) was in Reign of Fire, too. He was Creedy–“Crispy” Creedy in the end.


  2. I didn’t mind Hillary not having an Irish accent, I just found it weird that it took place in New York (being a book by an Irish writer, the story set in Dublin and everything). But that’s just some minor criticism.

    Well, I like 3.10 to Yuma more the more I think about it – which is very good for a movie. I know what the ending is getting at but I still think that they could have taken a little more time with Wade’s change of mind. Probably that’s just me, though.

    Yeah, I know Gerard Butler was in Reign of Fire, too. Oddly enough, I didn’t see him at all when I first saw that movie (guess I was “blinded” by Christian Bale) but I noticed him the second time I watched it.

  3. I really got Elmore Leonard wrong…shame on me. Bad K! No cookie!

    That leaves me with a whole lot of unexplained weirdness packed into one movie.
    I guess I’ll just go back to my Sergio Leone classics. Less brooding, more style.
    I’ll leave the genre of “manly men being broody and doing weird shit because the sun has been roasting them under their dark hats for too long” to those who can appreciate it ^_^

  4. wenn du damit leben kannst, dass es auf deutsch ist, schenke ich dir gerne mein buch p.s. i love you. also ich liebe dich eigentlich.
    wenn dus nicht willst, landet es im mistkuebel. vielleicht bin ich sogar gut drauf, und lass es in der straßenbahn liegen.
    denn, bitte verzeih, das buch ist ein echter dreck. ich hab die ersten 30 seiten beim arbeiten nebenbei gelesen, eine kollegin hatte es mit. natuerlich musste ich wissen, obs noch besser wird und habs mir kurzerhand am naechsten tag in der zeitschriftenhandlung am suedbahnhof gekauft. (ehrlich- dort kann man es kaufen! sagt das nicht alles?)
    und ich finds einfach nicht gut. die person, die es schrieb, hatte offensichtlich noch nie mit einem verlust klarzukommen. die handlung ist hundertprzentig vorraussehbar und die abgruende der menschen flach wie eine flunder. ausserdem drueckt es einfach zu oft auf die billig traenendruese.
    pfui sag ich da nur!

  5. Ich hätt kein Problem damit, dass es auf deutsch ist, aber ich glaub nicht, dass ich es haben will – außerdem krieg ich’s morgen schon geborgt.
    Ich würd’s aber nicht wegschmeißen, sondern an bookcrossing geben (oder wirklich einfach in der Straßenbahn liegen lassen, oder beides). Ich find’s immer schade, wenn man Bücher wegwirft.
    Ich kann mir gut vorstellen, dass es literarisch nichts wert ist und dass es vorhersehbar ist, aber ich glaube auch, dass es ganz gute Unterhaltung sein wird/kann. Mal schauen. Ab morgen weiß ich mehr und ich werde meine Erkenntnisse wie immer hier festhalten. :)

  6. Hey, no way, Big Russ is Australian! Kiwis get your dirty hands off him!

    (To be fair, we only claim him when he behaves, when he’s in trouble he’s all America’s problem. Kind of like African Americans and Mariah Carey…)

  7. He was born in New Zealand, that’s what I took as my point of refernce… But he obviously spends more time in Australia, so objection acknowledged and I will, in the future, refer to him as Australian, except for when he makes trouble ;)

    African Americans claim Mariah Carey? I thought she was a latina. Interesting.

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