Jonah Hex Parent Guide
Frankly, every now and again a movie's running time may be its best asset, and such is the case with this production's scant 82 minutes.
Parent Movie Review
One of my favorite movie scenes comes from The Muppet Christmas Carol where those wonderful old codgers, Statler and Waldorf, offer this critique: "It was dumb. It was obvious. It was pointless. It was… short… I loved it!" Viewing Jonah Hex left me feeling the same way. Frankly, every now and again a movie’s running time may be its best asset, and such is the case with this production’s scant 82 minutes.
Based on a comic book character, Jonah (Josh Brolin) is a bounty hunter in the 1800s. He turns bad after getting burned with a branding iron while being forced to watch his wife and son consumed in their flaming home. The torching is an act of vengeance exacted by Quentin Turnbull (John Malkovich) in exchange for the death of his son (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) at Jonah’s hands.
After the gruesome attack, Jonah is left to die—and that’s where fate intervenes. Discovered by some local natives with mysterious healing powers, the near-corpse is given a second chance at life. Even better, their magic cure endows him with what every comic book character needs—a super power. In this case, Jonah acquires the ability to bring a person back from the dead just long enough to have a brief conversation. With all the bullets and bombs that blast in this film, it’s a very handy skill to possess.
Time passes until 1876, the centennial year of the United States of America. Turnbull has used this interval to amass a team of thugs and become the Osama bin Laden of the 19th Century. Along with the massive stores of dynamite and weapons he has collected, the tyrant is determined to build the ultimate "nation killer." This device looks somewhat like a turret cannon, but is capable of launching bowling-ball-sized ammunition. When its shot hits the ground, it just smolders. Then a single glowing orb is also lobed into the vicinity resulting in a tremendous explosion that flattens everything.
Helpless to know how to defend the country against this madman, the US military leaders give the advice every comic book hero needs to hear: "President Grant, the fate of our nation rests on Jonah Hex." Now the man with the frightening facial disfiguration is given the political permission to do whatever he wants to bring down the terrorist.
Like the film’s runtime, the storyline is also kept short. Instead of plot development, the rest of the cinematic experience is filled with scenes of mass killings involving a variety of weapons, some of which I’m quite certain didn’t exist during this historical period. (Mind you, neither did the annoying metal guitar that constantly pounds throughout the musical score.) Put simply, in this type of movie the only people who aren’t killed without hesitation are the immortal protagonist and antagonist. Oh, and Meagan Fox (playing a saloon hooker) is also spared. After all, she’s the sole woman in this tale and her cleavage is the only force that can stop the lead from flying across the screen for a few moments.
All this violence is chased down by only a few stiff drinks, some implied sexuality and a smattering of profanities. Even so, something tells me our Muppet critics would still boo this hero off the screen for being dumb, obvious, pointless and returning a high cost per minute for your entertainment dollar.Directed by Jimmy Hayward. Starring Josh Brolin, Megan Fox, John Malkovich. Running time: 82 minutes. Theatrical release June 18, 2010. Updated July 20, 2016
Rating & Content Info
Why is Jonah Hex rated PG-13? Jonah Hex is rated PG-13 by the MPAA for intense sequences of violence and action, disturbing images and sexual content.
Violence: Many scenes in this movie portray people being shot with guns and other weapons. Some of these killings feature blood effects. Three scenes depict huge explosions that obliterate a train and buildings containing men, women and children (no gory details are seen). Corpses are briefly brought back to life, but then begin to smolder and burn. Dead men are dragged on the ground behind a horse. A bloody sack is seen that supposedly contains a human head. A man’s face is branded with an iron and later he holds a red-hot axe to his face to remove the scar (we don’t see details in either event).
Sexual Content: A woman works as a prostitute at a saloon and is frequently seen in low cut attire. One of her regular customers is a married man who tells her he’s willing to leave his wife and children to be with her. A man and woman are seen in bed prior to and after having sex.
Language: Approximately a half-dozen mild profanities and a scatological term are heard.
Drugs/Alcohol: Infrequent consumption of liquor.
Page last updated July 20, 2016
More parents' guide for Jonah Hex after the break...
Jonah Hex Parents' Guide
Eli Whitney is mentioned in this film as making a contribution to the fictitious weapon being built. In reality, Whitney is remembered as being one of the people who started the Industrial Revolution after he invented the cotton gin. Whitney is also credited by some for having created interchangeable parts, which contributed greatly in the mass manufacture of weapons. For more details on Whitney check http://www.eliwhitney.org.
The most recent home video release of Jonah Hex movie is October 12, 2010. Here are some details…
Jonah Hex releases to DVD and Blu-ray on October 12, 2010.
Jonah Hex on DVD (Single Disc) offers:
- Additional Scenes.
The Jonah Hex Combo Pack (Blu-ray, DVD, Digital Copy) includes:
- Deleted Scenes.
- Featurettes: The Inside Story of Jonah Hex and The Weird Western Tales of Jonah Hex.
- DVD Copy
- Digital Copy
Related home video titles:
Another political tyrant builds a weapon of mass destruction in the movie The Legend of Zorro. Josh Brolin takes on the role of Pres. Bush in the unofficial biographical film W., John Malkovich gives life to the evil Galbatori in Eragon, and Megan Fox appears in Transformers.