Saturday, October 06, 2007

NYFF: No Country For Old Men

From the 45th Annual New York Film Festival (Sept 28th thru Oct 14th)

"You Can't Stop What's Coming" is the best of the various taglines No Country For Old Men is using in its promotional push and also the most descriptive of the movie's plain talking brute force. The body count is high and the film gathers power as it goes along, like some destructive elemental storm. From all reports it's adapted quite faithfully from the acclaimed novel by Cormac McCarthy. The Coen Bros 12th feature doesn't compromise. There's no musical score to speak of and little to comfort the audience within its bleak world view beyond the well judged comedic grace notes that are character based rather than jokey. The story is told in a linear fashion but this is hardly conventional: the final battle-weary act is, in fact, anything but. Mesmerizing movie.

More later as Oscar season approaches... but there's one inevitable element: Javier Bardem will be nominated (Lead or supporting though, who knows? The cast is strong across the board but his character, the violent sociopath Anton Chigurh, dominates the film the way Hopkins dominated Silence of the Lambs or Daniel Day-Lewis dominated Gangs of New York though neither were in fact the "lead")


Michael Parsons said...

What about Kelly?

Anonymous said...

Can it be considered a black comedy?

RJ said...

All the talk seems to be placing him in supporting so...I go with that one.

Anonymous said...

Supporting is usually the easiest way to victory. So... Go, Bardem!

MichaelMcl said...

He should have won the Oscar for his performances as Rejas in THE DANCER UPSTAIRS. Such a quietly charismatic lead, a real anchor for a great film.

- The Bardem-loving Jarhead-hating Australian

(Ps. Seriously - JARHEAD - saw it the other night. Challenges my notion that a film about boredom doesn't have to be boring. Indeed, this one was.)

Fanboy said...

I must have been living under a rock and didn't realize that this film was released.

After seeing a brief about it in the paper, I saw it last night and was blown away. Bardem made me so uncomfortable as an audience member (and I say that as a compliement). Brolin totally impressed me too. Unlike many, I think the last scene was unnecessary, but I understand it's purpose.