QUANTUM COWBOYS is a time travel rotoscoped and animated sci-fi comedy western directed by Geoff Marslett that explores several different parallel universes and times in distinct and different styles.
For anyone that saw the episode of Bob’s Burgers where they had fans send in animation styles and created an episode around those different forms, this had a similar feeling to it. In some ways it feels like the first HEAVY METAL film too, but there’s nothing derivative about QUANTUM COWBOYS. It’s a unique and truly original art piece that is more than just a film, it’s an experience.
The various segments through the movie jump through styles and bounce around the narrative, but nothing is intentionally jarring or off-putting. Everything appears designed to flow together in one smooth story that hooks the audience from frame one. The idea of jumping from one universe to another adds a fun sci-fi element to the movie, although it would probably play fine without that plotline running through it. The western element provides an interesting backdrop to the entire story, providing a specific reality that the audience can easily grasp as the movie twists, turns, and churns through itself.
With a fantastic soundtrack to accompany the movie, there is nothing here to complain about.
While the humor can be a little one-note and the performances hit-or-miss, there are some familiar faces that pop up (notably David Arquette and Neko Case) to spark interest if the audience’s attention starts to wane. Of course, folks will notice the lead Kiowa Gordon from their role in the TWILIGHT franchise.
This film plays best in a theater with an audience. It generates an energy that is difficult to sustain in your living room, but that shouldn’t stop you from seeking it out when it hits your preferred streaming service. Even better, get your tickets if you find it playing at a festival in your town.
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