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Old 01-03-2011, 12:45 PM   #1
The_AirHawk
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Default MOfo Movie Review: True Grit (Coen Bros.)

You've seen the '69 John Wayne version, you know the story: Early-1800's plucky little girl hires rough drunkard to track-down her Father's killer, bring him to Justice, tags-along to witness and have satisfaction.

Going into this, I wasn't sure what to expect; would the Coen Bros. fill it with profanity and blue-humour, with the near-ubiquitous foray into soft-porn with a side of Bloodbath? Or would this be a word-for-word, gunshot-for-gunshot re-hash of the John Wayne Classic, with droll, phoned-in performances from the "name" actors, only with better camera-lenses?

Turns out, it was Shakespeare. Indeed, watching True Grit was nigh-upon the experience of a Broadway presentation of Hamlet, or perhaps Henry VII; lacking only the fake English accents, silly clothes, "Thou's", "Taketh's" and "Hearketh's". And nary a contraction to be found.

Now, this is not just John Wayne plus highbrow dialogue - not at all. Each and every actor turned-in a performance worthy of an Oscar - even the "no-name" bad guys delivered their lines as if their character had an Education - and you believed the badguys were actually BAD men - only, perhaps they weren't always as such. When I watched Jeff Bridges, I did not think "John Wayne" - I thought "Rooster Cogburn". Matt Damon plays perhaps the most-talkingest Texan I have ever seen, with this trait as the primary foil with which Bridges' character prods and jabs Damon's (although his own is a loud, loutish brute who initially seems devoid of compassion or decency; fond of drink and telling tall-tales of prior exploits, some of which he was not-necessarily proud of).

Of Five available Stars, I give this movie a 4.5. Only because any remake, no-matter the merit with which it stands alone, deserves-not a perfect score.

See this movie: if you have ever been a fan in any way of Westerns, you will NOT be disappointed.

Watch the Trailer here.
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Old 01-03-2011, 01:57 PM   #2
Morbo the Destroyer
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Am I the only guy who finds it odd...maybe even troubling...that there are so many re-makes of movies and even TeeVee shows? I mean really...can't they think of new stuff to cover? Is there a single movie from the 70's and 80's that hasn't been redone? They made of movie out of BEWITCHED, for God's sake!

Not to say this movie isn't awesome, it's getting great reviews everywhere. But damn...The Taking of Pelham 123-4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10. How about a movie about ecstacy, or oil shortages, or Hurricane Katrina, or the Great California Eastward Migration...hell I can come up with 50 movie topics in 50 minutes.
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Old 01-03-2011, 02:08 PM   #3
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No, you are not the only one. Personally, my biggest disappointment in the movie WAS the lack of an "original" story. WHY did they have to remake it? If they wished to use those characters (and they rewrote the damn thing anyway), WHY NOT just write a "new" story of Reuben "Rooster" Cogburn, and pick up where John Wayne's character left off?

That said, everyone involved DID do a remarkable job with it. For what it's worth, I give the '69 John Wayne film a 4.5 as well - based on his own acting and that of (then relatively unknown on the big screen) Kim Darby, and their interaction.

So, Coen's: Net Gain? Zero.
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Let them hate so long as they fear
политики предпочитают безоружных крестьян
Politicians Prefer Unarmed Peasants
Nothing to see here, Citizen. Move along now...
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Old 01-03-2011, 02:39 PM   #4
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Oh! There is one thing I meant to comment upon that bothered me, that I neglected:

Early in the movie, there's a scene where Mattie watches from within the crowd as three men upon a gallows are prepared for Hanging. As she reached the crowd, the first can be heard lamenting his upbringing, his love of strong drink, his temperment, etc. As he finished, the Executioner placed a black hood over his head.

The next told of how he mistakenly killed the wrong man, and how he "would have been acquitted had he killed the right man". When through, the Executioner hooded him as well.

Finally, a Native half-breed starts to give his Final Words. As he began the Executioner roughly cut him off - jamming the hood over his head, to which the crowd in the film laughs uproariously - and then walks across the deck to the lever and gives it a firm yank, putting Paid to these Societal Debtors.

This is the part that bothered me: When the crowd laughed, so did the moviegoers (or at least most of them). Was this merely a knee-jerk reaction to the mirth displayed on the screen? Or did many of the watchers truly find this humorous? And if so, was it due to the rude silencing of the man - the abruptness of his final commencement, or simple bigotry; "Ha-ha! - look at the silly Indian! Thought he had the Right to say his last words like a REAL human!"? Nervous Gallows Humour? What?

If you DO watch this movie, I request you pay-attention to the movie-house for those few minutes, rather than just the movie. I'd be interested to see if this was repeated in other theatres than my locale.
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Parfois, on fait pas semblant
Sometimes, it's not pretend
Oderint Dum Metuant
Let them hate so long as they fear
политики предпочитают безоружных крестьян
Politicians Prefer Unarmed Peasants
Nothing to see here, Citizen. Move along now...
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Old 01-03-2011, 02:53 PM   #5
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I saw it on Christmas night with a buddy. Great movie. Talked about it for days. Well worthy of being in the DVD collection.
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Old 01-03-2011, 03:39 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Morbo the Destroyer View Post
Am I the only guy who finds it odd...maybe even troubling...that there are so many re-makes of movies and even TeeVee shows? I mean really...can't they think of new stuff to cover? Is there a single movie from the 70's and 80's that hasn't been redone? They made of movie out of BEWITCHED, for God's sake!

Not to say this movie isn't awesome, it's getting great reviews everywhere. But damn...The Taking of Pelham 123-4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10. How about a movie about ecstacy, or oil shortages, or Hurricane Katrina, or the Great California Eastward Migration...hell I can come up with 50 movie topics in 50 minutes.
Hollywood rehashes old Politburo ideas and you're surprised at remakes of old movies?
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Old 01-03-2011, 05:07 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Buzglyd View Post
Hollywood rehashes old Politburo ideas
Yep, that was my job.

-Dalton Trumbo-


.
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Bill Clinton and Chuck Schumer are praising the Supreme Court for overturning an anti-gay-marriage law that they both signed.
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Old 01-03-2011, 05:17 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Buzglyd View Post
Hollywood rehashes old Politburo ideas and you're surprised at remakes of old movies?
Buzz, I know for a fact that you're a reasonably coherent man in person, able to navigate your way through airports, rental car counters, and lunch. But this post is completely incoherent. I see Shiz apparently gets it; maybe I missed a class.

'Splain it to me.
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Fun Facts to Know and Tell!

Thomas Jefferson wrote that the 1st Amendment erected a "wall of separation" between the church and the state (James Madison said it "drew a line," but it is Jefferson's term that sticks with us today). The phrase is commonly thought to mean that the government should not establish, support, or otherwise involve itself in any religion.

Its.......A FACT!
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Old 01-03-2011, 07:29 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Morbo the Destroyer View Post
I see Shiz apparently gets it
Actually, I didn't. I just clipped the first part to take a shot at the mistakenly ennobled Dalton Trumbo.

I suspect perhaps Buz meant to write "Washington" instead of "Hollywood."
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Old 01-04-2011, 06:05 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by schizuki View Post
I suspect perhaps Buz meant to write "Washington" instead of "Hollywood."
He tries to keep up on his websites while driving his Mercedes. As soon as Merc releases the auto-steer option his posts will be much better.
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Fun Facts to Know and Tell!

Thomas Jefferson wrote that the 1st Amendment erected a "wall of separation" between the church and the state (James Madison said it "drew a line," but it is Jefferson's term that sticks with us today). The phrase is commonly thought to mean that the government should not establish, support, or otherwise involve itself in any religion.

Its.......A FACT!
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