Monday, March 24, 2008

Three by Three

Three things I liked about No Country for Old Men

  • The acting. Don't think Bardem trumped Holbrook, but he was very good, and Jones did a marvelous job of creating a very real-feeling, sympathetic character without much screen time to do it in. Josh Brolin was fine, if a bit one-note, but Kelly MacDonald, as his wife, was excellent - and how shocked was I to hear her Scottish burr in the featurette? (Although it does beg the question - they couldn't have found a Texas girl?)
  • The skill - all of the set pieces were immaculately composed and edited, and had me on the edge of my train seat. It's a gorgeous film.
  • The beginning - the Coens do a very good job of quickly introducing the characters and situation, of getting the ball moving with a minimum of fuss and bother

Three things I did not like about No Country for Old Men

  • The ending. The sequence of events at the end of the film were just a little too understated for me - I was not exactly clear as to what was going on. But on top of that, I wasn't sure of the point - apart from that violence is pervasive? Or that greed is bad? I felt a little lost as the credits rolled.
  • The violence - in the end, the film may have been a tad too much for my squeamishness levels. The broken arm at the end really disturbed, for some reason.
  • The score. I read somewhere after seeing the film something about composer Carter Burwell being part of the Coen family, and had to think back - was there a score? I guess so, but it did not register at all.

Thus far I've seen three of the five Best Picture nominees, and so far I'd put this third, after Juno and Michael Clayton.

Until Whenever

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