Posts Tagged ‘Josh Brolin’

No Country For Old Men – An Argument

By Jason A. Hill & Ezra Stead

No Country for Old Men, USA, 2007

Written and Directed by Joel and Ethan Coen

Based on the Novel No Country for Old Men by Cormac McCarthy

No Country for Old Men is full of excitement, suspense, and action, but I got the feeling that there was something deeper going on under the surface and I was expecting some revelation at the end. [Note: “An Argument” is a new feature on Movies I Didn’t Get, in which the site’s founder and owner, Jason A. Hill, and head editor, Ezra Stead, debate the relative merits (or lack thereof) of various beloved movies on which they disagree. Please feel free to get in on the argument in the comments section below.]

No Country for Old Men - An ArgumentJASON’S ORIGINAL REVIEW: I didn’t get this movie. I wanted to, and I was fully engaged as I watched the film. However, by the “end” of this film, the only way I knew it was over was by lights in the cinema coming up, and for a film that wins Best Picture, Best Director, Best Adapted Screenplay, and Best Supporting Actor, I really expected a lot more. Of course, I saw the movie before all of that.

No Country for Old Men is full of excitement, suspense, and action, but I got the feeling that there was something deeper going on under the surface and I was expecting some revelation at the end. What I got instead was that feeling you get when you’re at a big concert and the headlining band comes out on stage two hours late then leaves the stage after one song as the lead singer throws the mic down and flips off the crowd. At first, everyone thinks it’s a great gesture, but after a while they start to feel conned.  Read More

True Grit – A Classic Western From The Coen Brothers

Posted 19 Feb 2011 — by Ezra Stead
Category Film Reviews, Movies I Got

By Ezra Stead

True Grit, USA, 2010

Written and Directed by Joel Coen and Ethan Coen

Based on the Novel True Grit by Charles Portis

The Coens' True Grit is better than the original.

If I were going to direct a Western, I wouldn’t even consider any other cinematographer than Roger Deakins. A frequent collaborator of the Coen Brothers, Deakins shot two of the best films of 2007 – the Coens’ No Country For Old Men and Andrew Dominik’s The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford (quite possibly the best Western ever made) – and it was his painterly eye and excellent use of light that created the mournful, elegiac and distinctly American feel of both those excellent films. Now he has reteamed with Joel and Ethan for their first true period Western, True Grit, and more than their wonderfully dry humor or the excellent performances by Jeff Bridges and newcomer Hailee Steinfeld, it is his work that makes the film as good as it is.

Don’t get me wrong – the Coens have created a truly classic film here, a real Western with all the best parts of the 1969 original intact and amplified, and with a much stronger sense of the other characters besides Bridges’ Rooster Cogburn (whereas the original was mainly a vehicle to showcase John Wayne’s finest performance). Bridges is utterly believable and likable as the irascible Cogburn, and Steinfeld is a talent to watch in the coming years, imbuing young Mattie Ross with a steel resolve that makes me think the 14-year-old could probably beat me in a fight. As mentioned above, the script is full of wonderfully dry humor and startlingly realistic violence (I can’t imagine what they had to cut to whittle it down to a PG-13); there is much to praise about all aspects of the film, but for me it is definitely Deakins’ work that shines the brightest. Read More

Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps

Posted 08 Oct 2010 — by Jason A. Hill
Category Film Reviews, Movies I Got

By Jason A. Hill

Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps, USA, 2010

Directed by Oliver Stone

shia labeouf michael douglasOliver Stone’s Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps is really a film that came out about a year too late. As America bickers over the methods and strategies of economic recovery, we are just now coming into an understanding of the full scope of what took place during the economic meltdown in 2008. While this film exists on its own factious story and morals, the situational setting of its subject matter is impossible to ignore. And while the film is riddled with its problems as a narrative film, such as a flawed plot and flawed acting, it does point out important questions as to what happened, why it happened, and what’s yet to be done with those who are responsible for, and who benefited from, its aftermath.

When living in a country where a large percentage of the population still believes Saddam Hussein was responsible for the attacks on September 11th, 2001, or that President Obama is a Muslim, it’s hard to believe that what happened with the financial meltdown will ever be truly understood. A ton of books have been written on this topic by the very same economists and academics who failed to see it or warn the public beforehand, and now still claim to be experts on the subject. The press is just as incompetent, doing little more than displaying a wrestling match between these “experts” as they fight over details in the margins. What’s left for the rest of us is to reflect on what happened as we continue struggling to recover from its effects. Read More

Changes Inside Warner Bros And DC Could Mean New Films/Series For Comic Characters

Posted 05 Oct 2010 — by Jason A. Hill
Category Film Industry News

By Jason A. Hill

DC entertainmentWBWarner Bros. has moved operation of DC Entertainment under its supervision with Diane Nelson to serve as President. DC Entertainment, formerly a separate division of Warner Brothers Entertainment, Inc., will be integrated along with the DC Comics business, brand, and characters into WBEI.

DC Entertainment will now work with each of the Warner Bros. divisions, which will tap into the expertise of the studio and utilize DC properties as key titles and growth drivers across all of the studio, including feature films, television, interactive entertainment, direct-to-consumer platforms and consumer products. The DC Comics publishing business will remain largely unchanged. DC Comics releases about 90 comic books and 30 graphic novels a month and remains a creative leader in the comic book industry. Read More

No Country For Old Men – Or Movies With Plots And Endings

Posted 12 Jun 2009 — by Jason A. Hill
Category Film Reviews, Most Confusing Films of All time, Movies I Didn't Get

by Jason A. Hill

No Country for Old Men, USA, 2007

Written and Directed by Joel and Ethan Coen

Based on the Novel No Country for Old Men by Cormac McCarthy

Anton Chigurh with his cattle shockerI didn’t get this movie. I wanted to. And I was fully engaged as I watched the film. However, by the “end” of this film, the only way I knew it was over was by lights in the cinema coming up.

And for a film that wins Best Picture, Best Director, Best Adapted Screenplay, and Best Supporting Actor, I really expected a lot more. Of course I saw the movie before all of that.

No Country for Old Men is full of excitement, suspense, and action, but I got the feeling that there was something deeper going on under the surface and I was expecting some revelation at the end. But what I got was that feeling you get when you’re at a big concert and the headlining band comes out on stage two hours late then leaves the stage after one song as the lead singer throws the mic down and flips off the crowd. At first, everyone thinks it’s a great gesture, but after a while they start to feel conned. Read More