In the modern world, you are damned if you do and damned if you don't, and that it is how it is on this bitch of an earth. Probably the most visually gorgeous Coen Brothers film, which is fitting for a story where words -- sentiments, confessions, histories -- feel like meaningless rhetoric for proving immaterial points. Rewatching it, I was not on board with the casual homophobia surrounding Jon Polito's character.
When I was 14, the Coens in an austere mode didn't interest me, so time for a revisit. The commentary on alienation initially feels even more borrowed than the black & white, and neither the Coens nor Thornton get a consistent view of its anti-hero's inner life. The good news is they can out-twist James M. Cain, and by the end they've reached a point where any homage/pastiche has picked up something purely theirs.
Film noir in glorious black and white done with perfection by the Coens. Especially Billy Bob Thornton's face and voice-over was born for this type of movie and as always the Coens have rich use of interesting faces and character details. While the ending itself is not that all surprising nor is it's twists it is the journey that is worth it's time. An excellent homage.
Melding a 40s noir stylisation with 50s atomic-age paranoia, the film is not just the most imaginative of the Coen's nihilistic investigations into the theme of accountability, but a subjective character study about a man seemingly content to drift through his own existence. Like A Serious Man, apathy is presented as a kind of hidden bliss; their characters only smited when they attempt to control their own destiny.
This is an interesting character study about a man, who is a sort of spectator. From the distance, he's watching his very own life, in a way, as if he has nothing to do with it, without any personal concern. BBT is splendidly visualizing a man who is emotionless & invisible. A typical Coen movie, nicely shot, with attention to every detail, about the curiosities, absurdities, pecuilarities & uniqueness of life.
Like other Coen Brothers movie as usual, this movie contained unique characters, strange humor, and some twists and turns. I think they were very ambitious to make a crazy-plot movie. Unfortunately, it made this movie lacks of focus. Still, it's a good movie...