Thursday, 11 April 2013

Quigley Down Under (1990)

Poor old Tom Selleck, always been the poor mans Harrison Ford, the second choice Indiana Jones or the last option action man. On his side though are his manly looks, his chiselled features and that famous manly facial hair that ensured Selleck is a mans man despite his failure at being in any really big films.

This long forgotten western is actually one of his best films in my opinion, the films title doesn't help its case for sure, it tends to give the impression of a silly comedy in the vain of 'Lightning Jack' with Paul Hogan but its nowhere close. Filmed on location in Australia instantly giving it that epic look with some awesome scenery and having a kind of Dances with Wolves-ish plot really makes for a terrific adventure. Yes there is some silly humour to raise a smile but it fits nicely and never really gets too daft to spoil.

Rickman as usual is splendid in his role as the wickedly nasty English cad hunting Aboriginal folk for sport. Sure his performance is really the same as his Sheriff of Nottingham from 'Robin Hood Prince of Thieves' but it works just as well here (Reynolds and Costner must have seen this and wanted the same for 'Hood').

The rest of the cast all perform well as immigrant Irish workers in the 1800's outback, everything looks great from sets to costume and real aborigine people seem to have been cast giving an even more realistic feel. A bit funny how Quigley never loses his customised rifle and every time he's called to help people in danger he's conveniently set far away enabling him to use his fancy customised rifle to its full potential. Its only at the end we do actually find out Quigley can look after himself without the rifle.

Great light-hearted fun adventure which was set for Eastwood or McQueen to star which gives you a good idea of what to expect. The film also has a nice emotional theme which isn't too strong but enough to add some quality, raising it above most other more silly boys own adventures.