Finally got around to watching 3:10 To Yuma today. Holy silver bullet in a well-greased chamber, is it badass; it's a western that's as much about the gritty gunplay and shootouts as it is about the thrilling drama and intelligent plot. The concept of honor and dignity between men in the old west is laid bare; it percolates throughout, then comes to a head by the satisfying (and bloodsoaked) conclusion. At the heart of the film is Bale and Crowe, who play up hero and villain, each with a distinctive amount of character layers to be discovered. There's a real human element in the film, and I'm glad the movie rises far above the reliance of standard western archetypes.
Damned excellent score, too. Never was an outspoken fan of Marco Beltrami's works; he's always had a good hand at delivering strong, solid orchestrations, but his compositional efforts have often been meandering, forgettable affairs. Yuma turns that rep on its head, delivering a tour de force of rhythmic underscore and strong melodies. Here, Beltrami allows the orchestra to play accompaniment to an impressive array of acoustics and percussion, as well as tack piano and organ. There's traces of Morricone to be heard, certainly, but it borders more on subtle homage rather than blatant rip-off.
Highly recommended. Viewing the trailer makes me want to watch the movie again. That, and I'll need to seek out the original '57 version.