One of the unexpected standouts at Comic-Con was Civil War-era flick Jonah Hex, a somewhat under-the-radar Western adventure with supernatural elements. It stars a scarred and badass Josh Brolin as a gun-toting, crow-barfing, whore-loving crusader against evil.
Directed by Jimmy Hayward, Jonah Hex was made on a small budget, all of which went into the freaky, creative special effects. Star Brolin called the style "a fantasmagoria of insanity," and Hayward explained it was a mixture of Spaghetti Western and straight action, with a supernatural side.
The footage we saw at Comic-Con was frenetic ala Sam Raimi, with speedy steadycam and monsters that practically vibrated with psychedelic imagery. Our hero Jonah Hex has a hideously scarred face, and has died and come back as some kind of undead mega-gunslinger. The movie is a liberal adaptation of the comic book of the same name, and Hayward said he's a fan of the comic but chose not to use its iconic voodoo villains for the flick. Still we get a lot of supernatural imagery, terrific-looking vamps erupting out of the ground and a crow squirming out of Jonah's deformed mouth.
Megan Fox plays Jonah's love interest, a hooker whom he's been seeing for years but keeps at arm's length because everyone he loves dies. Fox looks lovely in her Victorian slutwear, and isn't bad with a gun either. The dirty Western look and feel of the movie is also highly reminiscent of Deadwood - if that town were infested with vamps as well as evil saloon-owners.
During a discussion about the movie after we saw the clips, Fox described her character's relationship with Jonah as "fucked up and twisted." Brolin echoed her sentiments, summing up the crazy, mind-blowing footage we'd seen by exclaiming, "Fuckin' A, right? It has a Spaghetti Western aspect to it and a circus aspect."
Hayward said they really wanted to make a Western action film, with just a touch of the supernatural. He said the main challenge in making the movie was how little money they had - Brolin described it as "look[ing] like a $70 million film, yet we had less than half of that to do it." Most of that money went into effects, not towards the actors. "We did it for the love of insanity," Brolin said with a wicked grin. "I don't think there's anything like it."
The badass feeling of the film stretched into the fan questions portion of the Comic-Con panel too. One guy walked up to the mic with a digital camera on his shoulder and said, "Megan Fox, I'm wondering if you'll make a sex tape with me."
After the audience stopped booing, Brolin said, "Damn I don't want to see what that guy will look like in 30 minutes."