Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Ah but something ain't right in America. We all know it, deep down. It's soul is twisted. There is violence there. In America's DNA. And it's getting worse, and can't be stopped. That's the beautiful point of the Brother Coen's No Country For Old Men, and the Cormac McCarthy novel it is based upon. It's dark yet utterly mesmerizing, occasionally violent (but not as violent as many have said) yet delicate, spare yet dazzling in it's minimalism, and everything about it is perfect. Tommy Lee Jones is perfect as God, or the voice of God at least; the old man with a Bible and a gun out of a U2 or Johnny Cash song (or, a U2 song featuring Johnny Cash- specifically "The Wanderer" off of Zooropa) trying to make sense out of our crazy times and the movie we're watching. Javier Bardem is brilliant. I'm not exactly sure what he brought to the sort of character that we've seen before to make his performance so jarringly effective, but he brought it, and I couldn't take my eyes off of him as he pursued Josh Brolin's cowboy, who deserves kudos for keeping up with Bardem and Jones (who looms over the film completely inspite of his comparatively short time onscreen). Every bit actor, every perfectly framed shot, every perfectly placed ray of light, it's all there... thanks to the unflinching vision and patience of the Brothers Coen.

It's a masterpiece for our troubled times. Go choke on it.

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