Netflix All-Star Comedy Western Is A Modern Cult Classic

By Charlene Badasie | Published

a million ways to die in the west

The 2014 Western comedy film A Million Ways to Die in the West is currently in the Netflix streaming chart top 10. The movie is directed by Seth MacFarlane, who co-wrote the script with Alec Sulkin and Wellesley Wild. MacFarlane also stars in the film alongside Charlize Theron, Amanda Seyfried, Neil Patrick Harris, Liam Neeson, Giovanni Ribisi, and Sarah Silverman.

Our Cowardly Hero

a million ways to die in the west

Set in the year 1882, A Million Ways to Die in the West tells the story of Albert Stark (Seth MacFarlane), a sheep farmer in the small town of Old Stump in the American West. He’s a cowardly man who hates the dangers of the frontier. As a result, his girlfriend Louise (Amanda Seyfried) leaves him for the more successful Foy (Neil Patrick Harris).


Albert’s life takes a turn when he meets Anna (Charlize Theron), a new woman in town who helps him find his courage. Albert doesn’t know that Anna is the wife of the notorious outlaw Clinch Leatherwood (Liam Neeson). As Albert and Anna grow closer, Clinch arrives in town, leading to comedic albeit dangerous confrontations.

Funny And Visually Impressive

A Million Ways to Die in the West is a hilarious take on the classic Western genre, infused with MacFarlane’s unmistakable comedic style. The movie is filled with hilarious moments, from outrageous death scenes to sharp one-liners that showcase MacFarlane’s talent for blending the absurd with the intelligent.

The visuals in A Million Ways to Die in the West are another highlight. They capture the vast and rugged beauty of the Western landscape with a vibrant and almost cartoonish charm. The attention to detail in the sets and costumes enhances the comedic effect, making the Old West feel authentic and (at times) whimsically exaggerated.


a million ways to die in the west

Adding to the film’s appeal are the numerous cameos, including a delightful appearance by Christopher Lloyd as Doc Brown and a brief, hilarious spot by Jamie Foxx and others. A Million Ways to Die in the West marked MacFarlane’s second feature-length directorial effort following Ted in 2012). The idea for the film came from his fascination with the harsh realities of living in the Old West.

A Million Ways to Die in the West received mixed to negative reviews from critics who described the film as a “disappointingly scattershot affair.” Audience reception was similarly mixed.

While some folks appreciated the film’s humor, others found it inconsistent and overly reliant on crude jokes. As a result, the film only managed to earn around $87 million at the global box office.

Stream It Now


The mediocre response to A Million Ways to Die in the West didn’t seem to bother Seth MacFarlane, who has been involved in numerous projects over the years, including the animated series Family Guy and American Dad as well as the live-action series The Orville. His latest project is Ted, a prequel series based on MacFarlane’s popular film franchise.

Ted Season 1 premiered on Peacock in January 2024. The show is set in 1993 and follows the adventures of John, a 16-year-old boy who wished for his teddy bear to come to life. Interestingly, Ted, which features dialogue and comedy similar to A Million Ways to Die in the West received positive reviews and has been renewed for a second season.