Takes itself much too seriously, with acts of brutality outnumbering the gags.
-Anthony LaneFull Review
Cowboys & Aliens is an agreeable time-killer, but I'll bet a couple of clever kids could make a livelier movie with a Woody puppet and a Predator doll.
-David EdelsteinFull Review
[A] phenomenally successful two-man war against narrative clarity and continuity.
-Christopher OrrFull Review
A film that entertains, even if it doesn't live up to the full-on madness potential the title portended.
-Laremy LegelFull Review
It's just big silly fun, the kind you're supposed to have at a summer movie with a ridiculous title.
-Tom LongFull Review
Over on the aliens side, it's hard to make out faces, but there's no doubt about their place of origin: These slimy, growling, bug-eyed and distinctly non-scary things are straight from central casting.
-Rick GroenFull Review
Nothing very exciting happens.
-Joe NeumaierFull Review
It may be two treats in one, but for an audience that's pigged out on spectacle all summer, that might be two treats too many.
-Ann HornadayFull Review
The movie gets by on the strength of agreeable talent who enjoy playing along and can endure the horse manure and space goo being shovelled.
-Peter HowellFull Review
This sharp-looking, committee-written adaptation of a genre-splicing graphic novel wins points by frequently, smartly and affectionately tipping its hat to classic Westerns and their archetypes.
-Lou LumenickFull Review
It's hard to say what is most depressing about "Cowboys & Aliens" - the film itself, or the fact that this was the best movie a posse of major Hollywood players could come up with.
-Kenneth TuranFull Review
A crowd-pleasing summer movie with more wit than most.
-Mick LaSalleFull Review
A stultifying pileup of nonsense and stupidity, with way too many cowboys (and Indians and Mexicans and a scrappy mutt and a cute, brave orphan) and not nearly enough aliens.
-Rene RodriguezFull Review
Favreau's film doesn't take any risks, reducing the stakes to the point where the movie descends quickly from its fun exposition to a collection of meaningless explosions and predictable action sequences.
-Ian BuckwalterFull Review
The storytelling, punctuated by incoherent flashbacks, is often inscrutable: I'm still trying to figure out which side of the cosmos gave birth to the woman played by Olivia Wilde.
-Joe MorgensternFull Review
There is enough to like and to savor in Cowboys & Aliens that it makes for an enjoyable two hours in the dark with a big bag of buttery popcorn.
-Charlie McCollumFull Review
[A] loud new action genre mash-up.
-Chris VognarFull Review
Action-packed yet curiously lifeless, "Cowboys & Aliens" shoots blanks.
-Colin CovertFull Review
Cowboys & Aliens could have been the tangelo of genre-blenders. Instead, it's more like the Jimmy Dean Chocolate Chip Pancake & Sausage on a Stick.
-Richard CorlissFull Review
The Searchers meet Independence Day. Great fun.
-Richard RoeperFull Review
Tonally, the movie is off: not quite as sober and majestic as the John Ford westerns it's inspired by, nor as ironic and irreverent as, well, Favreau's two Iron Man films.
-Steven ReaFull Review
[Favreau] wavers uncertainly between goofy pastiche and seriousness in a movie that wastes its title and misses the opportunity to play with, you know, ideas about the western and science-fiction horror.
-Manohla DargisFull Review
Alien-invasion aficionados should be pleased. Western nostalgists may be pleasantly surprised. Fans of cowboys-versus-aliens movies, well, it's been a long wait and here's your movie.
-Michael PhillipsFull Review
The filmmakers here (who include director Jon Favreau (Iron Man), five credited writers, and countless special-effects technicians) don't seem to have agreed on whether they're paying homage to these genres or mocking them.
-Ben SachsFull Review
Cowboys & Aliens is a mashup of a mediocre Western and a mediocre science fiction story. The resulting film is far better than the sum of its two seemingly disparate parts.
-James BerardinelliFull Review
The mash-up of cowboys and aliens doesn't do either camp any favors. How are we supposed to work up a rooting interest when both sides are shooting blanks?
-Peter TraversFull Review
It's like a double feature but with all the boring bits taken out and all the fight scenes run together.
-Stephen WhittyFull Review
The movie never makes much of a case for its own existence; it's a mediocre western clumsily welded to a mediocre alien shoot-'em-up, and if you allow yourself to think about its treatment of history for as long as one second, you'll feel insulted.
-Andrew O'HehirFull Review