6 September 2000 | Mister-6
No "Way" to treat a movie...
If they would have just dropped the whole slavery ring idea, the Dylan McDermott character and most of the nastiness, this could have been a great movie. As it is, though, "The Cowboy Way" is only half-good, which is a shame seeing how good the good parts are.
As Pepper, Woody Harrelson has his best movie part in a long time. His raunchy, ready-for-anything cowpoke is one funny character. He contributes some of the best scenes here, as observed before; like when he entices the lady in the string quartet, does the "no-hands" trick with the hat, licks salt off of Marg Helgenberger's neck or dances around on a model's runway. He's quite a show, that Woody.
Sutherland doesn't come off quite a swell as Sonny, the more sensible of the duo. He's all seriousness and grim necessity - the exact opposite of Pepper. That he gets the bum end of the deal is no fault of Sutherland's or ever Harrelson's. They both do their best under the circumstances, yet have to fight a no-win situation against the script, which gives them only a couple of scenes where they actually get along.
But then there's the whole situation of WHY they are in New York - the white slavery, vice, corruption, beatings, shootings and deaths have no place in a movie whose biggest parts aim for a "'Crocodile' Dundee" flavor. Confusing? Definitely.
Five stars for "The Cowboy Way", only half-good, but half-bad, too.