Cowboys and Aliens is surprisingly good

February 16, 2012 at 2:40 pm Leave a comment

I have to admit I held off a long time before I watched this film.  Actually I had to be trapped on a long flight before I gave it a chance.  Imagine my delight to find such an archetypally strong film.

We see Cowards grow into Heroes and a Tytrant turn into a Lover/King but my favorite moment is when the main Hero (Daniel Craig ) is so rugged and strong that he carries the woman to safety – he is so focused on his mission that he apologizes when he stumbles.  He insists she gets whatever water there is.  I know it is so over the top it is funny.  But the character has captured the essential nature of the Hero archetype.  He has found something to value and he is willing to give his life to preserve and protect it.

This film is like a pool of archetypal energy doing its thing.  The cowardly gang of thieves man up in the end and find something worth fighting for.  The Coward son who is such a whiny Bully in the beginning, grows to be more heroic and respectful.  The Tyrant as you probably guessed is the father who neglects the First Nation boy who loves and respects him.  The Tyrant becomes the Lover/King as he allows his heart to exist outside himself regardless of the social repercussions.  The Bartender (Doc) becomes a man as he learns to be physical, develop skills such as operating a gun and learns to shape the outcome of his life.  The alien that is an heroic ally was a nice twist.  Always good to have a little surprise (hopefully I have been cryptic enough that the two people who have not seen this movie will still be surprised).

If you are looking for some practice in identifying masculine archetypes, this is a fun opportunity.  The more you identify archetypes in story the easier it is for you to access them from your unconscious when you are writing.

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