Communicator (communicator) wrote,
Communicator
communicator

The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford

I've seen both 'Jesse James' and 'No Country' now. I just came back from Jesse James. The Arts Centre was packed but I think the film wasn't what a lot of the audience expected; many of them were quite restless. One word really describes what this film is like - 'lyrical' - it's the text book case of a dreamy, lyrical film. I've heard this director compared to Terrence Malick, and if you like that type of poetic filmography then I think you'll like this. The pace is slow, and it takes you through everything, rough and smooth. I relished it, when I wasn't distracted by the idiot boys in the audience chowing down and lighting up their mobile phones to check that five more minutes had gone.

There have been a number of lyrical/philosophical westerns lately, and I think they are hard to get right; I've been quite scornful of most of them (Seraphim Falls - worst example). This one does not invite scorn. It is most expert and accomplished. There is a depth and complexity to underpin its reach. The performances are good across the board, in particular Casey Afleck as Robert Ford, Brad Pitt deceptively layered, and Sam Rockwell never more heartbreaking.
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