Starring James Van Der Beek (TV's DAWSON'S CREEK, VARSITY BLUES) and Dylan McDermott (TV's THE PRACTICE) alongside Ashton Kutcher (TV's THAT '70s SHOW) and Usher Raymond (THE FACULTY) ... After the Civil War, Texas is at t... more »he mercy of murderous bandits! From the chaos emerges a group of young cowboys summoned to reform the Texas Rangers and restore order! Under the fearless leadership of Leander McNelly (McDermott), the new Rangers find themselves severely outgunned and outgunned, but unmatched for courage and determination. From the director of HALLOWEEN: H20 and featuring Rachael Leigh Cook (SHE'S ALL THAT) and Robert Patrick (SPY KIDS).« less
"If these actors are Texas Rangers then Charlie's Angels are real detectives. I am a Western fan and this movie has no redeeming value. Tom Skerritt should be ashamed to appear in this film. If I could have rated this video at -5 I would have done so."
Misses the Bullet
Charity Bishop | 12/13/2001
(3 out of 5 stars)
"In the after-effects of the Civil War, Texas is a sleeping giant falling prey to vicious marauding and theft by Mexican invaders. The Rangers were disbanded to fight for the South; now they are to be regrouped, with a former pastor-turned-lawman, Leander McNelly (Dylan McDermott), in he lead. Persuaded by the government to undertake the training and leadership of thirty rag-taggled, half-bit schoolboy-turned-lawmen, McNelly finds himself at odds not only with his own priorities and shaken faith, but his inability in leadership.One member of this poor crop of unshaven boys is Dunnison (James Van Der Beek), whose family was slaughtered by the Mexicans. Due to his writing talents, he is chosen as McNelly's personal aid and undertakes documenting all of the reports to Washington. With very little time for training, the Rangers saddle up and ride off to meet their fates. But prejudice, poor shooting skills and mistakes are the least of McNelly's problems. There is also a traitor among them... a character who will turncoat... and a violent climax in Mexico.Texas Rangers (PG13) has a good heart and could have been a great film. It's been a long time since there's been a truly excellent western on the market -- not since Jimmy Stewart donned his white hat and rode into the west. Sadly, this one will not fill the void. The fact that the film was not pre-released for the press is a dead giveaway that something is lacking. The acting is excellent -- pity the scriptwriters didn't give Dylan McDermott and Rachael Leigh Cook more to work with. The soundtrack is gorgeous -- will it be released? Probably not, considering the big-screen failure of the film.
The movie abounds with clever camera angles, gorgeous photography and costuming, and truly unanticipated moments -- ambushes, traitors, and clever banter. Sadly it is based more on gunfights and cheap thrills than pliable emotional conflict. Characters are under-developed; we hope they don't get killed but don't really have a reason why. The female leads in particular are too overlooked, the actresses unable to exhibit their full potential. What this film desperately needed was a side plot or a stronger main plot to draw from -- more emotion, less coldness. Perhaps a stronger romance; more background information. Too many characters are left in the lurch, their personalities trailing off as if the writer didn't know what to do with them. In conclusion, it was worth a matinee. I came away sorry for the under-development and violence, but willing to watch it again on video or DVD (prefurably a Director's Cut). If you like the tradition of old westerns, "Texas Rangers" fits the bill. But if you shy away from nonstop violence and cheap character development, you may want to pass this one over for a Christmas blockbuster. It had a lot of potential... but was too slow on the draw."
Texas Rangers stinks up the screen - in cowboy outfits!
Get What We Give | Georgia | 08/04/2003
(2 out of 5 stars)
"Hot off the popularity of their television shows, James Van der Beek (Dawson's Creek) and Ashton Kutcher (That 70's Show) attempt to score big on the big screen. That has since happened, but this film wasn't the reason why.The producers were obviously attempting to throw quantity not quality at the big screen, since they employed a host of well known television actors and a couple of singers. You have Dylan McDermott as the Captain in charge, Robert Patrick, Matt Keeslar, Usher Raymond, Tom Skerritt, and even Randy Travis. As an after thought they've even thrown in Rachel Leigh Cook as the token female character.The acting is never bad, it's just that there's really not much going on here to warrant any excitement. You can sit and watch this film from beginning to end without blinking and you'll swear that you must have missed something. That's what makes this simplistic film bad.The plot is super simple: bad men kill innocent people. Young studly guys band together as the "Texas Rangers" to right the wrongs, but not for revenge.Unfortunately, this story doesn't have oomph to make it any good. Alfred Molina, as the bad guy, just never comes off quite as bad as he should. The reason? A fine actor, Molina seems to be bored and somewhat ashamed to be in such a stinker. He does bad things but he never comes off as evil or homicidal or even psycho. This movie really begs for a Bruce Dern in "The Cowboys".And the good guys...these guys are apparently sharing one brain among the 30 of them. In one fight scene, they come charging in a single line across the plains to a wooded area where the bad guys are holed up with tons of places to hide. Of course the good guys are masacred. Since no one bother to introduce us to any of the good guys beyond the major players, we really can't care too much if any of the good guys get killed. In fact, I was hoping that more of them would be killed off - they really started to annoy me.In short, Texas Rangers is long on being a Teen Beat homage and short on being a real western. There is very little character development in either the good or bad guy camps and there is no storyline, but the central one. I think there was an attempt to throw in a love story angle, but it gets lost when Kutcher jumps in the tub with van der Beek.This film isn't the worst I've seen, but it certainly isn't even noteworthy.If you want to see a bunch of your favorite television studs in a cowboy outfits, then by all means rent this. Otherwise rent a decent western, such as The Cowboys, Rooster Cogburn, Shane, or Tombstone."
King Vidor It Isn't, But Still Enjoyable To Some Degree
Tsuyoshi | Kyoto, Japan | 10/13/2002
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Texas Rangers, one of the earliest organized law enforcement in America, has been treated in movie industry, and probably the best one remains King Vidor's version made in 1936. Since then, the name has been used as a TV series, and even as a baseball team, so it is time for someone to pick up this ledendary figures to make a film out of their eventful history. And here is a film based on this important part of American history again.The film starts with massive killings of innocent people by the villainous John King Fisher (Alfred Molina). And in order to regain the justice in the land of Texas, young gunmen get together under the command of Leander McNelly (Dylan McDermott), whose way of carrying out justice seems sometimes very dubious. James Van Der Beek is one of these brave youths recruited for the purpose, as are Usher Raymond and Ashton Kusher. Robert Patrick also appears as Sgt. John Armstrong who supports McNelly, and you will find Rachel Leigh Cook, who falls in love with one of them. Also, Leonor Verela ("Blade 2") appears, but her role is a very painful one, I warn you, fans.OK, and about the film ... well, first, don't expect something that might enlarge your knowledge about American history. Though the character of McNelly is a real one, and the location of the film is very beautiful and authentic, the story itself is nothing new, nothing inspired, just what you have seen in other western films. Though the film at least doens't stop to muse, and during this short running time there are enough shootings to keep you absorbed, you will feel something missing in it.The actors including Van Deer Beek are not bad, but it is McDermott who attracts the viewers most, with his comparatively complex characterization. However, I find Alfred Molina, usually a very reliable actor, is fatally miscast as a villain, and Rachael Leigh Cook looks very uncomfortable (though she was once in a costume drama "True Women.") Probably it is because we know (and she knows) that her role is just an obligatory one.Director Steve Miner, like his "Lake Placid," keeps the story going anyway, but he neither hits the right mark, nor misses it too wide. Surely "Texas Rangers" is entertaining, but needs something more to be really original."
It's better than a stick in the eye...
kent westmoreland | Houston, Texas | 12/30/2003
(3 out of 5 stars)
"I won't go long winded. If you have time to kill and like westerns, watch it. It will NOT be something that will stay in your mind very long."