Will Smith is one of the world’s most popular and most successful entertainers. He is probably the only star who has been a huge success in three separate genres of entertainment; namely music( he is a mean multiple Grammy award winning rapper), Television(his success with hit TV sitcom Fresh Prince of Bel Air still reverberates today) and movies. It’s no state secret that Mr. Smith is one of the biggest A listers out there, with a remarkable box office success to his name.
Although Will Smith movies are a treat, and he is certainly one of Hollywood’s most bankable stars, It may surprise you that like most accomplished actors, he still lands the occasional flop, which does not do wonders for his track record.
The script for this 1999 budget cracker was so bad that even Will Smith’s Co-star Kevin Kline found it appalling (a fact he unabashedly mentioned while promoting the movie).
Starring a heavyweight cast of stars, Wild Wild West simply failed to deliver-anything good, but managed to deliver the bad in a flood which came wave after wave with every forgettable scene.
The hugely talented cast of Will Smith, Kevin Kline, Selma Hayek and Kenneth Branagh could do nothing to rescue this movie, as they struggled constantly to bring life and depth to this expensive disappointment.
Directed by Barry Sonnenfield, he could do nothing with the bland script and the crust of stars at his disposal, so he ended up bombarding our collective senses with mindless set-pieces, and over the top special effects that just became too overwhelming to make a good impression.
Originally, the plot was supposed to be centered on two mismatched special agents trying to stop a wildly crazy evil doctor with destructive tendencies. But the plot was full of holes and only got more and more confusing as the movie blasted on to its forgettable conclusion.
The brilliant Kenneth Branagh who was the villain in a wheelchair was almost idiotic. Kevin Kline as the side kick partner to Smith was Obscure and obscuring in his role. The beautiful Selma Hayek brought her stunning looks and little more into the fray. And Smith as a gun totting law man, was for one of the very few times in his illustrious career, out of his depth.
The result of a lot of bad movie ingredients thrown in with the very few good ones, was that the good was eclipsed, and we were left with a massive flop that most audiences, even the staunchest fans of Smith, didn’t go to see.
After that horrific experience, Will went on to make several hits that cemented his legacy as one of film’s most reliable actors, but the huge failure of Wild Wild West must have been a hard pill to swallow; for him and his fans. It was that bad.