A Million Ways to Die in the West (2014)

A Million Ways to Die in the West – Review

This is cheeky chap Seth MacFarlane’s second major movie, following his first comedy Ted which came out in 2012. I watched A Million Ways to Die in the West over the weekend (whilst the rest of the world was watching a little movie by Chris Nolan?) and though I had no major preconceptions about the film – which I assumed would be light hearted fun – there really is hardly anything to say other than…….it was alright. 

Unfortunately the mediocre term ‘alright’ is really the best way to describe this movie which is in no way horrible but at the same time, continually misses the mark for gut wrenching laughter.

The story follows Albert (Seth MacFarlane) who is a nice, amicable and quite witty guy – if whingey at times – as he tries to win back ex-girlfriend Louise (Amanda Seyfried) by most popular western method – a gun dual. Friends, acquaintances, bandits, flirting, sheep and other shenanigans make up the rest of the TWO HOUR film.

What’s right with it? Well it’s a nice enough premise and the characters are, on the whole quite likable. There’s a decent array of actors and actresses to hold the show and Neil Patrick Harris in particular was pretty funny (even if my boyfriend did think he was ‘that bloke off Pointless’ – actually funnier than ANYTHING that happened in the movie).


There are (kinda) amusing references to other movies, attractive ladies to admire, celebrity cameos to spot (Ryan Reynolds – standard) and luckily, hardly any musical numbers at all (and the one they did do was pretty funny). BUT what’s wrong with it? Well the movie was definitely too long at just four minutes shy of two hours. I’m obsessed with film durations anyway but seriously guys. Way too long. 

And whilst a lot of negativity has been put on the quality of jokes – which many viewers either found too immature or, rather surprisingly, too racist – I just thought they weren’t that funny. Obviously it was immature in places, this is Seth MacFarlane we’re talking about (haven’t you seen Family Guy?) but they weren’t ALL toilet humour type gags, some of the script was witty and deadpan – kinda. I didn’t find any of the jokes racist either but I guess it’s how low (or high) your tolerance button is. To be hones the whole thing was just a bit sketchy, from the start. The kind of movie you’re willing to finish sooner rather than later, even though it’s getting the occasional laugh and smile out of you. 

I would (kinda) recommend this movie as a one-time-watch if you’re a fan of Seth MacFarlane or just having some friends over for a movie night. There’s enough in it to keep you relatively entertained – even spotting the celebrity cameos is quite fun (Ryan Reynolds – standard) but don’t expect to see the comedy of the year – because a million ways to die in the west? One of them must surely be boredom.


About emmakwall

Films, books, soundtracks, good humour
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30 Responses to A Million Ways to Die in the West (2014)

  1. Matt says:

    Well done here, this is exactly how I felt about ‘A million ways…’ As well! It wasn’t brilliant and sometimes it was just a bit daft. I wouldn’t recommend it to a friend but if they told me they had just seen it I could talk about it without scowling 😀

    • emmakwall says:

      Yes definitely! I like to be as fair as I can towards films. Snotty ‘critiques’ generally annoy me anyway!

      It was a very ‘meh’ film but enjoyable enough. I doubt I@d ever watch it again unless it was on TV and I just fancied some easy watching.

      Are you a fan of Family Guy or American Dad?


      • Matt says:

        Yeah I love both of them, they’re great to end the night on, a bit of animated humour is always good. I wasn’t a massive fan of Ted either, similar to A Million Ways… McFarlene just seems to make films that aren’t as good as his series. Do you like family guy and american dad too?

        • emmakwall says:

          I love them too! We have a lot in common haha I was thinking EXACTLY the same thing about Seth McFarlane’s TV shows v Movies.

          I preferred Ted to A Million Ways to Die in the West but again, not something I’d rush to watch for a second time.

          It took me a while to start watching American Dad. I get very attached to the characters and I LOVE the Griffins so much (especially Peter, Brian and Stewie) it was hard to imagine watching another family (sad as it sounds lol). I’m glad I did start watching it though as American Dad is JUST as awesome if not better!

          I love Steve and Roger the most 🙂 and Patrick Stewart!!!!

          • Matt says:

            Haha I know it’s spooky I literally watch both series every day before bed, it’s become such a love,y night time routine. I found American Dad quite early on, when series 2 was on telly, so I always knew it was funny, but I never properly started watching it alongside family guy until about three years ago. What I love most about Family Guy is the writers have actually said that there is literally one female head writer so they don’t write women characters very well. Probably why our favourite characters are the men 😜 I can’t decide which show I love more, both as silly and just as fantastic.

            • emmakwall says:

              I go through phases, I’ll watch more Family Guy and ‘prefer’ that and vice versa with American Dad but I love them both! I like the way American Dad is more focused on the family itself and its humour is sillier (it reminds me of The Simpsons style of humour at times) and no nasty jokes but Family Guy is undeniably hilarious and I love Peter Griffin so much haha!

              That’s really interesting about the female characters I never knew that!! But it does make complete sense when comparing the shows and say, Lois and Francine.

              I watch it most nights too! BBC3? 🙂 🙂

            • Matt says:

              Haha yeah BBC3 😜 great channel. I’m not sure how many female writers work on American Dad but I definitely like the women more in that than Family Guy. I love Lois don’t get me wrong, but Francine is just fantastic. And I love how the pick on Meg but that’s more of a trait of the other family members than Meg herself. I co ple telly agree, I’ve never really noticed, but American Dad does have a feel of The Simpsons! They also focus on cut always in Family Guy a lot, whereas American Dad focuses more on crazy situations in the moment. I love when they end up shooting each other. Did you see the one the other night where Roger falls in love with Hayley, shoots her, and steals Jeff’s skin? Classic. 😝

  2. Tom says:

    Nice ending line there. 😉

    These were pretty much my thoughts as well. Not a bad film but had lots of room for improvement (cut it to 90 mins for one lol) and it wasn’t as strong as Ted.

    • emmakwall says:

      Aww thanks Tom! 🙂

      Glad we agree, yeah it was nothing bad or offensive, just a bit dull! I agree Ted was far better.

      And yeah 90 minutes please!!!!!

  3. Ashley says:

    One time watch!!! It’s ok to me because i rarely watch a film second time. Well written Emma.

  4. table9mutant says:

    Yeah – this was fun but it was certainly no Ted. Doubt I’d re-watch it. Nice review. 🙂

    • emmakwall says:

      Thanks 🙂

      Yeah me too, maybe if it was on TV one day or something, but unfortunately it was nothing special. I did really ‘want’ to like it as well!!

  5. Natasha says:

    Good review! I really can’t see myself watching this soon though

  6. alexraphael says:

    Yeah this film got a very cool response.

  7. Drat! I was hoping this was better. I don’t think I’ll watch this even though it does have Neil Patrick Harris. Great review though Emma 🙂

  8. movierob says:

    yeah, wasnt the boiggest fan, but the cameos made it worthwhile watching…once 🙂

  9. Cici says:

    Weirdly or not so weirdly, since I like stupid movies, I enjoyed this…

  10. newguy87 says:

    This really was terrible, even after i enjoyed Ted

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