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No Country for Old Men (2007)

Art House & International movie directed by Ethan Coen and Joel Coen

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A No Holds Barred Movie

  • Jun 22, 2008
Rating:
+5
Before I give my review I first want to say that this film isn't for everybody, it's slow paced and doesn't spell out the plot for you like some of todays films do. The violence is graphic and unflinching and the actors in every role give a 5 star performance. My review will be based on a three part basis, they will be The Plot, The Characters and The Verdict, these should give you a fair overview of the film along with my personal opinion of the movie itself.

The Plot: Llewelyn Moss is a disheveled Vietnam veteran who's looking for a break. While out doing his usual deer hunting he stumbles across a massacre site where a drug deal has gone awry and whatever happened at the deal it lead to the death of all men involved. While investigating the site he finds a case filled with $2 Million which he decides to steal the money in the hopes of a better life for him and his wife Carla. He knows that he can't just take the money and live a happy life so he tells Carla to go and live with her parents while he goes away for a while until the dust settles. Little did Llewelyn know the man who arranged the deal was a murderous psychopath called Chigurh, he's a man that is prepared to kill anyone who gets in his way or anyone who loses the flip of a coin. He carries around a cattle gun and a silenced shot gun for which he uses to create chaos and torment to everyone he encounters. This is one of the chases of its own as Llewelyn is always one step ahead of Chigurh but with Chigurh being an ex special-ops has his ex colleague, Wells on his. Sherif Bell is also a man on the trail of Moss but he's always two steps behind the two of them.

The Characters: The superb portrayal of every character by every actor in this movie makes it truly superb and something memorable. The characters that stand out the most are that of Moss & Chigurh and I will discuss both these characters in this section.

Llewelyn Moss: Played by Josh Brolin is one of those characters that you root for from the very beginning but there's a deep feeling in your stomach that you know the man is doomed. He's a shell of a man who seems to have simply given up on life up until that moment he finds the money, because he's found it and can see the potential in how it can improve the life of him and his wife he's determined to keep the money no matter who's after him.

Chigurh: This is obviously the character that the whole movie revolves around, he's the venerable psychopath for whom nobody can explain his motives or his ideas. At the start of the movie we come to see him as simply a guy who likes to kill, then our minds are changed when we see him chasing Moss for the money and then our minds are changed again and we believe he may just like killing. When walking to a destination or when entering someone in conversation, he gives off this soulless chill that I can't really explain but once you watch the movie yourself you'll know what I mean. He's almost Frankenstein like in his movement, he shows no urgency or change in pace, he moves fluidly to the point of which when he bursts through doors and starts executing people you start to think. "How did he know they were there?" It's a truly superb performance by the relatively unknown actor Javier Bardem.

The Verdict: I have to say at first I didn't understand this film and it became quite confusing. I wasn't sure who was chasing who and I really wasn't sure what the movie was all about, then it became apparent as to the whole story which only really starts to come together around the middle of the film. It baffles me though, that how a man can kill so many people in sometimes very brutal and loud ways can still stay a step ahead of the police. It's a great movie and has an intelligence to it that we very rarely see on the screen these days. It doesn't have dramatic explosions and it has no point with which it uses background music in order to add effect, this will have encouraged the actors to give an even better performance and let me tell you it worked superbly. You must buy this movie and enjoy it time after time after time as it really is something great and for the two hour runtime I think we can safely say it's a bit too short.

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About the reviewer
Steven Stewart ()
Ranked #95
Currently studying Law at University, my main interests revolve around Politics. I read quite a lot and love learning about History. Not just the history of a specific time, place and person, but I'm … more
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Wiki

The Coen brothers make their finest thriller sinceFargowith a restrained adaptation of Cormac McCarthy's novel. Not that there aren't moments of intense violence, butNo Country for Old Menis their quietest, most existential film yet. In this modern-day Western, Llewelyn Moss (Josh Brolin) is a Vietnam vet who could use a break. One morning while hunting antelope, he spies several trucks surrounded by dead bodies (both human and canine). In examining the site, he finds a case filled with $2 million. Moss takes it with him, tells his wife (Kelly Macdonald) he's going away for awhile, and hits the road until he can determine his next move. On the way from El Paso to Mexico, he discovers he's being followed by ex-special ops agent Chigurh (an eerily calm Javier Bardem). Chigurh's weapon of choice is a cattle gun, and he uses it on everyone who gets in his way--or loses a coin toss (as far as he's concerned, bad luck is grounds for death). Just as Sheriff Bell (Tommy Lee Jones), a World War II vet, is on Moss's trail, Chigurh's former colleague, Wells (Woody Harrelson), is on his. For most of the movie, Moss remains one step ahead of his nemesis. Both men are clever and resourceful--except Moss has a conscience, Chigurh does not (he is, as McCarthy puts it, "a prophet of destruction"). At times, the film plays like an old horror movie, with Chigurh as its lumbering Frankenstein monster. Like the taciturn terminator,No Country for Old Mendoesn't move quickly, but the tension never ...
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Details

Director: Ethan Coen, Joel Coen
DVD Release Date: March 11, 2008
Runtime: 122 minutes
Studio: WALT DISNEY VIDEO
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