The Baytown Outlaws
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After her ex-husband Carlos shoots Celeste three times in the gut, it's time to play dirty. In the fight for her godson, Rob, she hires three outlawed and redneck brothers to bring him back to her. But nothing can be that simple in the South. What begins as a small rescue mission rises to a Southern battle royale. This odd team must shoot their way through gorgeous female assassins, Native American hunters, federal agents, and a whole lot of metal coming after them, while protecting Celeste's innocent child.
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“The Baytown Outlaws” is such a film. Never before have I laughed so hard at the vulgarities, and even the violence, of 3 Southern redneck brothers (you know you’re in for a fun ride when they burst into a house that’s full of bad guy drug dealers and kill every last one of them, only to find out they got the wrong house.) I have met and known men like these in my personal life (sans the violence, thank God,) but the Oodie brothers make me want to go to Alabama’s back country and find more.
The film centers on the Oodie boys. The eldest, Brick (Clayne Crawford,) Lincoln (Daniel Cudmore,) & McQueen (Travis Fimmel.) They are the not-so-hired guns of the local sheriff (Andre Braugher) who uses them to kill all of the other criminals in the county. They gleefully blow other bad guys away, the sheriff turns a blind eye, and his county ends up with the lowest crime rate in the state of Alabama.
Enter Celeste (Eva Longoria.) She wants to hire the boys to kidnap her godson Rob back from her crazy ex-husband Carlos (Billy Bob Thornton.) She offers $25,000 to the mostly cash-strapped boys, and the lure of such big money proves too much, so they agree to do the job, in a true smash and grab style.
Come to find out, Rob (wonderfully played by Thomas Brodie-Sangster) is confined to a wheelchair, unable to speak. We never know what condition he suffers from, but his disability somewhat disappears from our minds because he is treated as an equal by the boys. They don’t talk down to him, and McQueen is highly reprimanded by Brick during the one and only time that he mimics Rob’s disability (we later learn that there was a 4th Oodie boy who had been born with a disability and who used a wheelchair, but who died before McQueen could remember him; Rob reminds Brick of this deceased brother that wasn’t even given a name.)
Unbeknownst to the boys, Carlos has sent a fleet of other bad-guy assassins to get Rob back (they later learn that Carlos didn’t die in their initial smash and grab fiasco, but pretty much everyone else gets shot up in the joint (including the maid, whom McQueen accidentally kills; he apologizes to her corpse, adding “in my defense, you do work for an a**hole.”) And let me say that these are not just regular assassins; they’re equal-opportunity assassins (he sends out women on motorcycles, black dudes in a Road Warrior-type monstrosity, and Native Americans; everyone, it seems, gets to be a bad guy in the same film. Loved it.)
Everything comes to a head at an abandoned campground where the guns blaze and the arrows (yes, arrows) fly. In the end, we see that the boys have bigger hearts (and minds) than they let on, and they will literally fight to the death to protect one another, as well as Rob, whom they have made an honorary Oodie.
This film is like a redneck version of “The Boondock Saints,” another fantastic vigilante film. We have men doing very, very bad things for decent reasons, and you’d think that the men would be as bad as their actions, but that’s not always the case, especially with my now-beloved Oodie brothers.
Directed by Barry Battles, the film keeps a great pace and doesn’t really slag too much (the scenes with Carlos are sometimes a bit tedious, as are the scenes with the ATF agent (played by Paul Wesley) and the sheriff. But the dialogue is just good enough to make you forget the pacing flaws (viewers of “The Vampire Diaries” will be happy to see Wesley in a different role, but all I kept thinking was ‘man, Stefan Salvatore sure has got a potty mouth on him.’ LOL)
The film has a fantastic soundtrack, full of great classic and modern Southern-ish rock (and even an old time Gospel song thrown in for good measure.) I enjoyed collecting the songs on YouTube and listening to them in their entirety. And yes, there is a Skynyrd song in there, and no, it’s not the one you think.
There are so many funny moments and lines in the film; there are too many to list here. One of my personal highlights is a chase down the highway with the Road Warrior-ish truck, guns blazing, and they pass a cop car. The one cop turns on the siren, but the other one in the driver’s seat turns it off with a resounding “no…no, indeed, hell no.” The actor’s one line in the whole film, and the way he delivers it makes me laugh the hardest.
There are countless funny lines in the film, but if you get easily offended at derogatory slur words describing gay people & people with disabilities, you may cringe during the viewing. However, if you consider the way most brothers talk to each other (redneck or not,) it kind of makes sense. Personally, I find those particular words deplorable and insulting, but it comes out of the mouths of many types of people, and this film reflects that.
With few exceptions, all of the actors give fantastic performances. I loved how Travis Fimmel makes McQueen so very lovable, even though he’d just as quickly shoot you in the face if you looked at him funny. I especially loved the bond that occurs between him and Rob; he talks to Rob as an equal, and treats him as such. On the same hand, we see Rob having what is undoubtedly the time of his life; the smiles that appear on his face tell the tale of a boy who seems to come to life during his time with the Oodies.
In a wordless role, Daniel Cudmore does a fine job as Lincoln, the seemingly indestructible middle Oodie who, because of a crushed voice box, can’t speak words, but speaks volumes with his eyes (and his trusty Speak & Spell-type gadget.)
The film’s poster highlights Billy Bob Thornton & Eva Longoria, no doubt because they are the most well-known actors in the film, but make no mistake about it, this film, without a doubt, belongs to Clayne Crawford. He shines in his role as Brick, the eldest Oodie brother that knows who he is (“an ignorant redneck”) and seems to have no qualms about it. We see that he’s way more than that, however; he’s more intelligent than he lets on, and if you look deep enough, you see that he does, in fact, have a heart. He loves his brothers and comes to care about Rob, as well, if only because Rob reminds him of the lost Oodie boy that had no name.
The gleeful joy he takes in blowing away the bad guys in the opening scenes is evident, and as he sits and patronizes the dying man he’s just shot, the racist garbage that comes out of his mouth is ever-so-slightly lightened by the way he delivers the lines. And when McQueen informs him that they got the wrong house, the look on his face is utterly priceless. And all he can say is “ain’t that some s#!%.” This is just one of many fantastic scenes that Crawford has; he is absolute perfection as Brick. Thankfully, Crawford, who now plays Riggs on the FOX TV show “Lethal Weapon,” is getting a bit more attention these days. People are seeing what a fantastic actor he is. I have seen almost all of his work (he was wonderful as Teddy in the Sundance Channel’s now-gone “Rectify”) and I am looking forward to his future projects, among them “Tinker,” which also stars another one of my faves, Christian Kane ( on a little side note, Christian Kane was originally slated to play McQueen, but a scheduling conflict kept him from the role; he did, however, play McQueen in the “Baytown Disco” short, which led to the actual full-length film.)
I think Clayne Crawford is one of the finest American actors working today, and all one has to do is watch “The Baytown Outlaws” once, and that will become very evident.
“The Baytown Outlaws” is a very violent film with tons of profanity, but it is also one of the funniest, well-written and well-acted films out there. It has a good heart, as well, and very unexpected tender moments at just the right time. I highly recommend this movie. I personally consider it a classic, and I truly hope a sequel is made (pay attention to the closing credits; it’s left open for one.)
Too much improbability and an inconsistent story. There's no way these guys could've survived and the other hitman were better armed, had better vehicles, and appeared to be better trained yet died off like they were elementary school kids. The story was set up that the main characters were intelligent professional hitman but there were a lot of points in this movie proved otherwise.
If the guys are so smart then why did they get the wrong house? If the guys are so smart why are they shooting an armored truck and not at the bad guys? Find it hard to believe the guys would've like this and he kept kid is much as they did and connected with him at all and I find it hard to believe that the kid wasn't afraid of them.
It was filmed and produced OK which is the only reason why I give it three stars.
outlawed to bring him back to her. This rescue mission went beyond the law: Shooting to kill on the spot. Moreover, this small town's police caption was involved in a special way. Some twenty years ago, this caption saved lives of three boys. They grew up as outlawed but worked closely with their godfather-like caption. Look: This police caption was highlighted for keeping the crime index low. No discrimination for men and women gangsters regarding shooting and killing in this town.
In the end, these three outlaws and the captain were arrested and jailed. But not for long.