The allstar cast really elevates what would otherwise be a so-so comedy. Pitt delivers one of his best off kilter performances of his career and Malkovich is great as disgruntled, recently resigned employee. I identify with his character a bit too much, as I too contemplate walking away and writing a novel. Revisiting this one almost ten years later was a fun treat, but it hasnt aged the best. Still, 4 stars
It is fair to say, at this point, that a Coen movie will have the Coen Tm in at least a few ways. It's even more fair saying that having such a style in a project made to satirize a whole genre, with its own clichés and "habits" is note-worthy. Couple that with hilarious writing (duh), clever directing and a surprising Brad Pitt, and you've got yourself a ride. It does lack substance, but not without a good surface.
This is one of the most purely pleasurable films the Coen Brothers have ever done. It's a darkly comedic farce that gets funnier and funnier as it progresses, as well as showcasing the careful screenwriting skills of the Coens. The cast is all-around fantastic and hilarious, with Pitt and Jenkins being particular stand-outs. It may not be as deeply layered as other Coens films, but it is a lot of fun.