On the Big Board
|It is many things: an unrelenting thriller, a probing drama, and a meditative adventure about young/old, past/present. The Coens are back in a big way.
|Lean and satisying, and even better upon reflection.
|A terrific translation of McCarthy's work to the screen. Perfectly cast.
|Jean-Paul Sartre--Texas Style!
|Excellent low key action movie, save for Bardem's hair and the movie's failure to close at the end.
|A near-perfect adaptation of the Cormac McCarthy novel. Not for the faint-hearted, though.
Writer Cormac McCarthy has had a pretty good run lately. His most recent novel, The Road, was one of the best-reviewed books of 2006. A few weeks after Oprah made it one of her book club picks, he was also awarded the Pulitzer Prize for his work on the novel. In November, McCarthy's No Country for Old Men will receive the big screen treatment by the Coen Brothers. Positioned to open in November, it looks like the film is in line for awards consideration, too. In fact, it's already been nominated for the Golden Palm at the Cannes Film Festival.
No Country for Old Men is a tale about the shades of darkness and light that lie within the human heart. Set in West Texas, the story starts out when a young Vietnam War veteran named Llewelyn Moss goes out to hunt antelope for the day. He stumbles across a bloody scene that is clearly the result of a drug deal gone awry. He finds bodies, some heroin and enough cash that he is enticed to abscond with it. Llewelyn has an almost fatalistic attitude toward the money. He knows that he's going to be hunted by the bad guys involved in the deal. He knows that it's not likely to end well. Still, he just wants to know how far he can go.
Not long after Llewelyn leaves the area, Sheriff Bell arrives on the scene. Bell is nearing the end of his career, and recognizes the scene as something Very Bad. Soon, the crime Llewelyn discovered is linked to another gruesome crime committed by a psychopath named Chigurh, a man so crazily evil that the sheriff fears that his job has simply passed him by. Chigurh is following after Llewelyn, and so is an ex-Special Forces agent named Wells.
No Country for Old Men boasts a stellar cast, including Josh Brolin as Llewelyn Moss, Tommy Lee Jones as Sheriff Bell, Woody Harrelson as Wells and Javier Bardem as Chigurh. It's a film that looks to hearken back to the Coen's Blood Simple and Miller's Crossing days, with its dark themes and twisty plot. The Coens had a couple of stumbles with Intolerable Cruelty and The Ladykillers, but if early news on No Country for Old Men is any indication, it looks like they are solidly back on track. (Kim Hollis/BOP)