Monday, January 28, 2008

No Country For Old Men

We have been saving a lot of money around here by not going to that many movies. We like to pay for bigger and more expensive things like CAT scans, MRIs, X-Rays, an ER visit, and visits to the doctor. Speaking of doctors, I saw my tenth doctor today. That’s a different story, though.

No Country was the fourth movie we have seen in the theaters since arriving in Milwaukee. #1 Transformers. #2 The Bourne Ultimatum. #3 Ratatouille. All three of those were entertaining in their own right, but not one of them holds a candle to No Country For Old Men. Of course, not one of those movies tackles the material that the Cohn brother’s adaptation of the Cormac McCarthy novel of the same name, does. A comparison doesn’t work. No Country is, above all else, a story skillfully acted by Josh Brolin, Tommy Lee Jones, and Javier Bardem. That is to say, this movie is not a show, it wants you invested in the film and it pulls you in and has you sitting on the edge of your seat almost all the way through. The performances are so gritty and captivating that I can’t even remember if there was a soundtrack. Literally, when I recall the movie now I remember loads of scenes here and there, but I don’t remember music. There must have been a soundtrack, but the indelible impression is left by Bardem’s coldness, Brolin’s brash hope, and Jones’ resignation.

I don’t want to write more because I fear spoiling the movie. I want to recommend it and say that I went into it guessing it wasn’t going to be a typical movie, with manufactured elements, and an everybody-goes-home-happy ending. I can’t tell you if I was right or wrong. That would be a spoiler.

This isn’t a spoiler though. Here is a clip from the Goonies. Brand (Brolin) gets tied up by Mikey (Astin) and friends. What a great song, too. My favorite line from this clip is right after Mouth, played by Feldman, lets the air out of Brand’s bike: “Now it’s his most flattest thing in the world.”

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