User Score
5.7

Mixed or average reviews- based on 83 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 47 out of 83
  2. Negative: 23 out of 83
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  1. JohnC.
    Feb 12, 2009
    8
    Its a good old fashion western. I loved it.
  2. BEEsnider
    Jul 18, 2009
    10
    Great Cinematography, acting was superb, I have a feeling most people did not understand much of the story but hey, it's their loss.
  3. pdxsrw
    Mar 26, 2009
    1
    One of the worst movies I have seen in some time. If you like Mystery Science Theater 3k, then this is a fun movie to comment along to. A disappointing waste of time. The editing appears to have been performed by Elementary School Media 101 students. The dialog must have been written by the low bidder from a 3rd world company of drunken nomads. Ed Harris, I am embarrassed for you. Vigo, One of the worst movies I have seen in some time. If you like Mystery Science Theater 3k, then this is a fun movie to comment along to. A disappointing waste of time. The editing appears to have been performed by Elementary School Media 101 students. The dialog must have been written by the low bidder from a 3rd world company of drunken nomads. Ed Harris, I am embarrassed for you. Vigo, other than the Lord of the Rings trilogy, I have yet to take an interest in your character. And Renee Z.... ugh... painful. Expand
  4. scarpyO.
    Oct 6, 2008
    10
    Believable and likable characters with a great blend of humor, violence and a great unpredictable ending. Can't remember a western this enjoyable.
  5. ShaneB.
    Oct 6, 2008
    5
    I was really looking forward to this movie. I read the book awhile back. The opening chapter of the book was incredibly intense and they through that out. Alot of the efforts of the sidekick were thrown out. In the book he really had to cover for Ed Harris's character alot, Ed's character was a bigger social misfit than he appeared in the film. I think they really watered down I was really looking forward to this movie. I read the book awhile back. The opening chapter of the book was incredibly intense and they through that out. Alot of the efforts of the sidekick were thrown out. In the book he really had to cover for Ed Harris's character alot, Ed's character was a bigger social misfit than he appeared in the film. I think they really watered down the book leaving the movie with a slight pulse and I hate to say it but at times boring. The book is a short quick read, check it out. Oddly enough, A History of Violence, with Ed Harris and Vigo Mortensen, they did almost the same thing. Left out some great scenes and pivotal story elements, totally through out an important character from the graphic novel and completely rewrote the ending. Both of these movies would have been edgier, more convincing and offered a better movie going experience if they had remained a little truer to the books. I was anxious to see both of those movies and was fairly dissappointed after seeing both. I'm glad they made them, they are unique stories, alot different than alot of the other types of movies that are made. Expand
  6. idiotart
    Jan 10, 2009
    0
    I couldn't agree more with D.R. The critics must be smoking something. I've lost all respect for Harris.
  7. RyanS.
    Mar 1, 2009
    0
    This movie was short on the classic westerns gun slinging and full of power struggles between the characters of the movie. Ed Harris is a great actor, but this movie defiantly rates a movie that leaves much to be desired. I would not recommend this movie to anyone who is looking for a movie that has the same results as tombstone.
  8. KDG
    Aug 31, 2009
    2
    Yawn and double yawn. Zellweger is either horribly miscast or phonig it in, and I generally like her. Although it is beautifully shot and Mortensen is typically strong, the story goes nowhere and it does so very slowly with, at ltimes, shockingly bad dialogue. Don't bother wasting your time on this one.
  9. GaryM.
    Oct 13, 2008
    3
    Dreadefully boring. A collection of oater cliches occupied about a third of the film, the other two thirds being spent in . . . meaningful transitions? Studies of how little there really was to do in the Old West? Whatever.
  10. TerryR
    Oct 18, 2008
    5
    Ok, not great...no masterpiece that is for sure. Script is highly leveraged from Open Range. Acting is not great. Can actors please quit getting facelifts and brightsmile treatments? Rene Z looked freakish in this movie with her too tight to smile face, and nothing like seeing a rugged old cowboy show up and bust out a Jessica Simpson type smile. See also: Powers Booth in Deadwood.
  11. AnnB.
    Oct 4, 2008
    8
    The story line wasn't exactly "new," but the film was beautifully shot and the acting was good. We liked seeing an "old fashioned" Western. But, hey, couldn't they have found an American to play Bragg instead of Jeremy Irons, who was good, but his accent left something to be desired.
  12. RebeccaA.
    Sep 18, 2008
    1
    Saw this at a critic's screening. Booorrringgg! Who did they make this for? My grandparents? Even they would hate it it's so conventional, so slowly paced, so lacadaiscally directed by actor Ed Harris, The acting is fine, but the sript is such a throwback, at a time when the Western, as a film genre, needs to be reimagined if it has any hope of survival. The last great Western Saw this at a critic's screening. Booorrringgg! Who did they make this for? My grandparents? Even they would hate it it's so conventional, so slowly paced, so lacadaiscally directed by actor Ed Harris, The acting is fine, but the sript is such a throwback, at a time when the Western, as a film genre, needs to be reimagined if it has any hope of survival. The last great Western was "Unforgiven," another slow movie, but one which at least had a lot of subtext. "Appaloosa" only has text, and not very text at that. (And Zelleweger was horribly miscast!) Expand
  13. BartJ.
    Sep 21, 2008
    8
    A good old-fashioned western.
  14. BitBurn
    Jan 4, 2009
    7
    Not that bad. Storyline holds up well, well acted. Lacks a bit action scenes though.
  15. JasonDeatherage
    Feb 9, 2009
    6
    I would have to say that this movie was ok. I liked the characters and the directing, but the story was a little boring. It is basically a love story that was set in the western frontier. If you are looking for a gunblazing western along the lines of Young Guns or Tombstone then this movie is not for you. If you love westerns in general then this movie will be up your alley.
  16. NickJ.
    Oct 11, 2008
    2
    While I did enjoy Mr. Mortensen's character and the slowly unfolding pace of Appaloosa, it is a Frankenstein of a western, built mostly of cliches. You get it all: the well read / no good varmint running roughshod over the frightened citizens of a lawless town, the strong and silent lawmen who aint no heroes, saloon whores, horse raiding Injuns, Chinese waiters speaking broken While I did enjoy Mr. Mortensen's character and the slowly unfolding pace of Appaloosa, it is a Frankenstein of a western, built mostly of cliches. You get it all: the well read / no good varmint running roughshod over the frightened citizens of a lawless town, the strong and silent lawmen who aint no heroes, saloon whores, horse raiding Injuns, Chinese waiters speaking broken English... For God's sakes it ends with a literal ride into the sunset! It'd be riot if it wasn't so darned earnest. Expand
  17. BobH.
    Oct 11, 2008
    3
    This movie was VERY slow. Things happen without explanation. Good acting, better directing is desired.
  18. JoshuaM.
    Oct 10, 2008
    0
    A western about westerns. This movie was awful.
  19. D.R.
    Oct 17, 2008
    0
    This movie is horrible. The dialogue descends from laughable to appalling. The cinematography is that of an amateurish B-movie. There is no plot, and all attempts at one fail as logic or entertainment. Renee Zellweger is painful to look at and obnoxious. This movie is so bad - so, so bad. I cannot fathom what the critics are thinking or watching.
  20. JudyT
    Oct 3, 2008
    7
    Appaloosa is an okay western and an okay movie. It's a great character study in Virigil and Everett. Ed Harris and Viggo Mortensen are great to watch. In the end though Viggo's part is written much better. His rendition of Everett Hitch makes it worth the money.
  21. DaveA.
    Oct 6, 2008
    1
    Boring is the word. There's almost nothing to this movie.
  22. hughiec
    Sep 17, 2008
    9
    Exciting and quietly funny. Mortensen and Harris are great. Zellwegger pretty good too.
  23. JaredC.
    Sep 18, 2008
    8
    2008's No Country for Old Men, but what it should've got in the reviews. Personally No Country's over rated. But damn, is Appaloosa is what Unforgiven fans and western lovers like.
  24. SimonH.
    Sep 29, 2008
    8
    A welcome return to the western - Fantastic cast, great character relationships, some of the tensest scenes I can ever remember watching - highly recommended.
  25. JayH.
    Jan 13, 2009
    7
    Solid western, well directed and the actors are ideally cast. Fine attention to period detail, great cinematography, fine score, good art direction. A traditional western made with modern flair.
  26. PatrickR.
    Jan 16, 2009
    2
    Tedious, slow, over-stylised. Improbable ending. Zellwegger looks weird with a trout pout. Only Mortensen is worth watching
  27. JaquieM
    Jan 7, 2009
    2
    Renee, although sometimes a good actress, droned on and on in a wimpy, whiny way that was obnoxious - and she looked AWFUL. While I beleive they may have uglied-her down a little, teh result was just terrible. Not an awful moviem but not what I expected. Viggo (who I normally love) didn't look all thet great either and seemed to be there merely to collect a check. In fact, after Renee, although sometimes a good actress, droned on and on in a wimpy, whiny way that was obnoxious - and she looked AWFUL. While I beleive they may have uglied-her down a little, teh result was just terrible. Not an awful moviem but not what I expected. Viggo (who I normally love) didn't look all thet great either and seemed to be there merely to collect a check. In fact, after about thirty minutes of it, that's what I wanted to say: "Check please ... I'm outta here. Yup." Expand
  28. JudyG.
    Feb 14, 2009
    0
    Without a doubt, one of the worst films I have ever seen-I like Ed harris a lot and I love Westerns but this was terrible- Stilted dialogue, poorly written and very predictable story line-sggest Ed Harris stick with his day job
  29. DavidR
    Apr 16, 2009
    3
    Slow, very little to get excited about after the opening scenes and nearly put me to sleep in at least three places. Everybody but Viggo Mortensen appeared to be overacting. Renee Zellweger's character was so badly written she had to be explained by the other characters. I wouldnt recommend this to anyone.
  30. KyleS.
    Nov 16, 2008
    1
    I am a western fan, especially those of Eastwood, Peckinpah and Leone. This movie felt like some egomaniacal actors willing themselves into the genre pantheon with performances and set-pieces that are sheer self-conscious pageantry. I agree that Zellwigger was obnoxious. I can't think of a western that doesn't feel in some way cliched, but this one was cliched and flatter than I am a western fan, especially those of Eastwood, Peckinpah and Leone. This movie felt like some egomaniacal actors willing themselves into the genre pantheon with performances and set-pieces that are sheer self-conscious pageantry. I agree that Zellwigger was obnoxious. I can't think of a western that doesn't feel in some way cliched, but this one was cliched and flatter than hammered crap to boot. Expand
  31. MM
    Oct 12, 2008
    4
    Ed Harris' ego trip. Film rips off HIgh Plains Drifter plus sidekick. Renee Zellwegger is expressionless but we root for Jeremy Irons as the bad guy. The script was crying for dialogue. Take the yellow lens off the camera. Lots of missed opprtunities.
  32. jk
    Dec 21, 2008
    5
    Hmmm, it was ok, but seemed to go at a purposely slow pace that seemed contrived.. Sometimes I think Zelwegger (Sp?) is hot, but not here.
  33. Jan 6, 2013
    7
    The story focuses on the relationship between Cole and Hitch, and what affect the (rather flighty) Mrs Fitch has on it. I actually quite liked this aspect of the plot; it gave the characters some realism, something that many westerns lack. All the performances from the main cast were excellent; in particular Ed Harris and Viggo Mortensen, who takes the prize for the best beard andThe story focuses on the relationship between Cole and Hitch, and what affect the (rather flighty) Mrs Fitch has on it. I actually quite liked this aspect of the plot; it gave the characters some realism, something that many westerns lack. All the performances from the main cast were excellent; in particular Ed Harris and Viggo Mortensen, who takes the prize for the best beard and moustache combo I Expand
  34. Nov 19, 2011
    5
    It was a decent film but a little too long for my taste and it didnt help that the movie took a bit to get into and was a bit boring as well. But the acting is good in it. Its ok but i dont know if I would suggest it to anyone.
  35. Aug 20, 2013
    9
    Appaloosa is one of my favorite westerns ever made (along with Unforgiven and Shane). The cinematography is beautiful, the acting is fantastic and the gun-play is exciting. It also has one of the best climactic quick-draws in movie history. from start to finish, Appaloosa is western perfection.
  36. Dec 15, 2011
    3
    Great acting, You cant denie that. The one huge problem of this film is that it lacks interest and its far too long, It made you feel like you were suffering just to get to any decent part in the film. The script could have been a lot better as well.
  37. Oct 7, 2013
    0
    The biggest flaw of the film is that it doesn't go anywhere. You sit through a 2 hour film and expect something but sadly there is nothing here with Appaloosa. The acting is average, The plot is painfully generic and boring, and it fails to keep you interested or entertained at all. I would not recommend.
Metascore
64

Generally favorable reviews - based on 32 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 25 out of 32
  2. Negative: 1 out of 32
  1. A fine dramatic comedy with fresh characters, witty dialogue and a keen interest in how relationships must have developed among frontier folks, tyrannical ranchers, no-nonsense lawmen and -- oh, yes -- the complicated women on that frontier.
  2. Reviewed by: Todd McCarthy
    50
    Harris' first directorial outing since his impressive and entirely different "Pollock" biopic bears echoes of many genre predecessors, especially Howard Hawks' "Rio Bravo" -- but echoes they remain.
  3. Reviewed by: Chuck Wilson
    70
    Harris and his collaborators are playing it straight with a timeless male fantasy--horse, hat, six-shooter--a traditional approach that will please moviegoers like my dad and yours.