Cowboys & Aliens (2011) - Rotten Tomatoes

Cowboys & Aliens (2011)



Critic Consensus: Daniel Craig and Harrison Ford are as dependably appealing as ever, but they're let down by director Jon Favreau's inability to smooth Cowboys & Aliens' jarring tonal shifts.

Movie Info

1875. New Mexico Territory. A stranger (Craig) with no memory of his past stumbles into the hard desert town of Absolution. What he discovers is that the people of Absolution don't welcome strangers, and nobody makes a move on its streets unless ordered to do so by the iron-fisted Colonel Dolarhyde (Ford). It's a town that lives in fear. But Absolution is about to experience fear it can scarcely comprehend as the desolate city is attacked by marauders from the sky. Now, the stranger they rejected is their only hope for salvation. As this gunslinger slowly starts to remember who he is and where he's been, he realizes he holds a secret that could give the town a fighting chance against the alien force. -- (C) Official Sitemore
Rating: PG-13 (for intense sequences of western and sci-fi action and violence, some partial nudity and a brief crude reference)
Genre: Western, Action & Adventure, Science Fiction & Fantasy
Directed By:
Written By: Mark Fergus, Damon Lindelof, Alex Kurtzman, Roberto Orci, Hawk Ostby
In Theaters:
On DVD: Dec 6, 2011
Box Office: $100.2M
Universal Pictures - Official Site


Daniel Craig
as Jake Lonergan
Olivia Wilde
as Ella Swenson
Harrison Ford
as Woodrow Dolarhyde
Paul Dano
as Percy Dolarhyde
Adam Beach
as Nat Colorado
Noah Ringer
as Emmett Taggart
Brendan Wayne
as Charlie Lyle
Buck Taylor
as Wes Claiborne
Matt Taylor
as Luke Claiborne
Cooper Taylor
as Mose Claiborne
Clancy Brown
as Meacham
Chris Browning
as Jed Parker
Keith Carradine
as Sheriff John Taggart
Toby Huss
as Roy Murphy
Wyatt Russell
as Little Mickey
Jimmy Jatho
as Saloon Patron
Kenny Call
as Greavy
Garret James Noel
as Gang Member
David O'Hara
as Pat Dolan
Chad Randall
as Bull McCade
Scout Hendrickson
as Jake's Gang Member
Raoul Trujillo
as Black Knife
David Midthunder
as Apache Warrior 1
Moses Brings Plenty
as Apache Warrior 2
Phillip Pike
as Apache Singer
Calum Blaylock
as Apache Singer
Paul Ortega
as Medicine Man
Nathaniel Chee
as Apache Dancer
Robyn Simmons
as Apache Dancer
Simon Choneska
as Apache Dancer
David Chee
as Apache Dancer
Vonda Tso
as Apache Dancer
Freddie Apache
as Apache Dancer
Lariat Geronimo
as Apache Dancer
Oliver Enjady
as Apache Dancer
Rex Rideout
as Fiddler
Show More Cast

News & Interviews for Cowboys & Aliens

Critic Reviews for Cowboys & Aliens

All Critics (239) | Top Critics (46)

The post-racial utopian vision is nice, but you'd hope it wouldn't take an alien invasion before we finally come to it.

Full Review… | October 7, 2015
Critic's Notebook

Why is this gloriously schlocky premise treated with such ponderous solemnity?

Full Review… | May 3, 2015
Philadelphia Weekly

The film is driven more by its concept than by its plot but it's still a fun summer film.

Full Review… | June 30, 2013
Big Hollywood

Expensive, a misfire, but perfectly servicable for what it is

Full Review… | January 14, 2013
Tribune News Service

Delivers on the promise of an exciting genre mash-up but, even with a talented cast and revered team of writers, fails to weave a fulfilling story.

Full Review… | October 2, 2012

Patchy, if enjoyable in parts, but nowhere near as awesome as that title suggests it should be.

Full Review… | September 28, 2012

Audience Reviews for Cowboys & Aliens


Daniel Craig was great. Ford had his moments. But this movie could have been so so so much better!

John Manard

Super Reviewer

An embarrassment for all involved. I'm rooting for the Indians, in this case.

Christian C

Super Reviewer


Now this film is one of the most entertaining films Jon Favreau has directed, And I love the first Iron Man film. Daniel Craig, Harrison Ford, and Olivia Wild all do good jobs as the main characters, and the side characters are all well done too, Clancy Brown as the pastor, and Sam Rockwell as the Doctor all do fantastic jobs. The aliens in this movie have similar desires like the aliens in the terrible film "Battlefield Earth" They want gold, why I couldn't figure it out and am not sure if they mention it. The aliens look interesting, and I will say one thing right now that is a bit of a subplot with one of the aliens and Daniel Craigs character.The film starts out pretty slow but once the aliens show up, it speeds on by like nothing and is a definite thrill ride. The ending 35 minute action scene is incredible to watch and is very well done. All I have to say is, if you're squeamish or very jumpy in horror movies, don't see this, but if you aren't and want a fun action western film, check this out.

My final rating
3.5*s out of 5

michael e.
Michael Edwards

Super Reviewer

Cowboys & Aliens Quotes

Jake Lonergan: I'm a wanted man.
Colonel Dolarhyde: I could have sworn I saw Jake Lonergan die in that cave.
Sheriff John Taggart: Damn shame. I was hoping to hang him myself.
Jake Lonergan: Jake chuckles and rides off into the sunset.
– Submitted by Stephan V (3 years ago)
Meacham: [to Doc - learning to shoot] Don't yank on it - it's not your pecker.
– Submitted by Brien M (4 years ago)
Meacham: Not bad for a country preacher.
– Submitted by Trypp B (4 years ago)
Ella: I told you not to look in the light.
Jake Lonergan: Yeah. Right.
– Submitted by Lucas M (4 years ago)

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