Monday, 21 May 2007

Cannes 2007: No Country For Old Men

The Coens, you gotta love ‘em. From their debut with Blood Simple, these filmmaking siblings have scarcely put a foot wrong, even if some of their films — I’m thinking of The Big Lebowski which I’ll admit I didn’t get the first time I saw it — take a while to fully coalesce in one’s brains as a fully fledged masterpiece, while others — BS, Miller’s Crossing, Barton Fink — hit it out of the park first time out. I’m so desperate to see their latest, No Country For Old Men, adapted from a novel by Cormac McCarthy. It’s not out in the UK till the autumn, and judging by the word coming back from Cannes, it’s going to be a looonng wait.

“A scorching blast of tense genre filmmaking shot through with rich veins of melancholy, down-home philosophy and dark, dark humor, No Country for Old Men reps a superior match of source material and filmmaking talent,” says Variety’s Todd McCarthy. “Cormac McCarthy's bracing and brilliant novel is gold for the Coen brothers, who have handled it respectfully but not slavishly, using its built-in cinematic values while cutting for brevity and infusing it with their own touch. Result is one of the their very best films, a bloody classic of its type destined for acclaim and potentially robust B.O. returns upon release later in the year.”

And then there's Empire's Damon Wise who writes: "To put it (blood) simple: No Country For Old Men is terrific, not simply a return to form but a return to roots, a tense, funny thriller that recalls not only their genre-bending debut but the wicked mischief of Fargo and the internecine vagaries of Miller's Crossing. Though it's based on Cormac McCarthy's novel, the Coens have taken his bloody neo-western and made it their own."

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