CAA is a fun(ish) big budget popcorn muncher that’s easy to poke holes through but still interesting to watch nonetheless.
(That is if you can get over the taciturn Daniel Craig speaking in an American accent. Poor fellow, every time he opened his mouth to speak, unbidden, my mind would cough up “Why is James Bond talking so funny”?)
We’re also supposed to buy that a name actor as big as Ford could conceivably play a character as nasty and foul as Col. Woodrow Dolarhyde without the obligatory third act redemption. But don’t you believe it.
CAA feels like fanboy pandering writ large, smashing together a handful of genre (SFF, Action, Western) and seeing what trickles out. The end result looks kind of like a finished jigsaw puzzle that’s been assembled from a variety of different boxes. The end result works, but it never really fits together as seamlessly as it should. The movie is too concerned with ripping the audience violently between various genre motifs “now we’re a western\now we’re science fiction” to worry about creating a story with any real depth or substance.
Your brain knows that its time to check out when the titular cowboys discover the extraterrestrial mining camp huddled in the back yard and decide to launch an assault on it. From here on in its straight Action Film 101. This sequence is particularly amusing because Ford spends a lot of time grousing about the need to utilize sound military tactics against a superior enemy and then decides that perhaps the best thing to do is just have his soldiers run around at the bottom of a dessert canyon, bereft of cover or common sense.