Sunday, February 03, 2008


Title: Tombstone (1993)
Dir: George P. Cosmatos
Rating: **** out of 5 stars

My boyfriend has nagged me to watch Tombstone for a long time now, and given my penchant for Kurt Russell and mustaches this year, I finally gave in. If only I had known Michael Biehn was the bad guy, I would have watched it a lot sooner!

Tombstone is named for the small Arizona town where famous lawman Wyatt Earp (Kurt Russell) moved to with his brothers to live a quiet life. They meet up with their old friend Doc Holliday (Val Kilmer), an eccentric, drunk gunslinger known for being quick on the draw. The gang tries to lead a simple life as gambling entrepreneurs, but they inevitably ruffle the feathers of a local gang who call themselves "Cowboys." Wyatt tries to stay out of the feud, but after violence erupts, the Earp men and Holliday are drawn into a clash with the Cowboys, including the infamous gunfight at the OK Corral.

The cast in Tombstone is great. This movie gives us gunslingers Kurt Russell and Val Kilmer vs. outlaws Powers Boothe and Michael Biehn. That alone is beyond cool. Rounding out the cast are Bill Paxton, Sam Elliott, Terry O'Quinn, and Dana Delany. Kilmer easily steals the movie as the smooth-talking, ever-inebriated, Tuberculosis-afflicted Doc Holliday. With his Georgia drawl and nonsensical catchphrases like "I'm your huckleberry", he is sure to give you the vapors. I hear it's a pretty accurate portrayal of the real man, too. Kurt Russell also gets pretty badass (duh) and I loved Biehn as a cocky young gunfighter who dares to think he's faster than Doc Holliday.

There is also a side-story where Wyatt's wife is an opium addict and he's falling in love with a stage actress. Who cares? Not me, that's for sure. Get back to the gunfights, I say! Tombstone has its boring moments, but I generally enjoyed the story and all the fantastic actors involved.