Saturday, December 22, 2007

No Country for Old Men (Joel and Ethan Coen, 2007)

*****
USA



The Coen Brothers adapt a Cormac McCarthy novel ostensibly concerning a bunch of disparate men directly and indirectly involved in a drug deal gone bad in the cavernous plains near the Texan border. The Coens are as invested in constructing their immaculately nerve-wracking suspense setpieces as they are in capturing in cinematic terms the parched, unsettling poetry of McCarthy's prose and worldview. From coolly tracking the protagonists' cat-and-mouse game, the picture - at first imperceptibly - moves on to exhuming the roots of their morbid resignation, and not a false note is struck along the way either by the Coens or their extraordinary cast.

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