With so few westerns coming out each year (I gotta say that True Grit helped revive the genre a bit), we can’t be too picky about them. Dead In Tombstone is a fantasy western movie, based on its two leads, Trejo and Rourke. This gruesome twosome almost always plays the same guys in their respective movies, that uber-cool, masculine, aged and experienced guy that you don’t wanna piss off. The answer to the question of what kind of movie is this is found in the movies that celebrated Trejo and Rourke: Grindhouse.
So if you like the works of Rodrigez and Tarantino this should be right up your ally. Of course, this being a direct-to-DVD movie, the budget didn’t allow the usual post-processing effects and other crap, so be prepared for a budget version of Machete, Hobo with a Shotgun or Grindhouse… The beginning of the movie was pretty awesome and fast-paced, but we paid for this in the rest of Dead In Tombstone as it losses its momentum after the first 45 minutes. Still, the story is structured well enough with those cool scenes and hails of bullets flying to keep your attention.
Guerrero is the name of the vicious gang leader, about to be hung by the neck until he’s dead. Luckily for Guerrero, he is the gang leader, so the rest of the gang saves him from the gallows and all of them head towards a small mining town. The reason for this is the information that the town is sitting on a huge amount of gold, stored in a bank, mighty convenient for bank robbers. After the successful robbery, Guerrero and the gang head their separate ways as they put the bullet to his heart. But, Guerrero is one tough son of a bitch…
With that supernatural element lurking in the background (pretty fucking hard to miss since the devil is giving the introductory speech) Dead In Tombstone took a huge risk of turning into a Syfy (yuck, what an awful term) crap. Luckily for us, the evil prevailed and you will be able to enjoy in a decent flick. Of course, with a few flaws: acting (besides two leads) was a bit wobbly and pretty horrific at times, those quick cuts made me pretty nervous and the same goes for that a bit shaky (not too much) camera and finally the story is sometimes forced too hard at the cost characters.
Now for the good stuff: fucking old school stunts, somebody got hurt most definitely while doing them. Nice and juicy gory scenes and finally Mr. Trejo and Mr. Rourke, although the latter has really limited screentime. Also, I can totally see this movie getting a remake in 20+ years, be one of the cool kids and watch it now…
Director: Roel Reiné
Writer: Brendan Cowles, Shane Kuhn
Cast: Danny Trejo, Mickey Rourke, Anthony Michael Hall, Dina Meyer, Richard Dillane, Edward Akrout