With a rough-flowing, throw-everything-at-the-wall narrative, this film's parts are greater than its whole. But, what parts they are! Almost every scene has something going for it, be it some tense writing and direction by Andrew Dominik, some complex character exploration, a fine performance from the great cast (Brad Pitt has rarely been better), or the always-astonishing photography of Roger Deakins.
First off, for a movie this long it stays enchanting all the way through. As someone who, at times, struggles with longer movies that's a major plus. I think it was the great build up of tension accompanied by the amazing acting and stunning visuals. Also keep an eye out for the pretty lighting! Voice-over and final minutes I could've gone without, but it's a biopic in some sense so I understand. Great otherwise.
9.5/10 - An outstanding masterpiece all-around, fantastic acting, cinematography, writing, etc. But while you might think the long title gives it all away, the real question still remains: is it really Bob, who killed Jesse, or is it Jesses myth, that killed Bobs myth with cunning, when Jesse realised it might be all over for him soon.
Each man has to love, then kill, his father. This story theme is rarely handled so masterfully, shot so beautifully and handled so sensitively. A great sadness infuses this film. There's precious little comic relief and when there is it's of the fatalistic kind. Sure it 'drags' in parts - but it's an artsy western. What do you want? Squaws and Cowboys? No, this runs deeper than all of that. Rite of passage.
This movie surely inspires bands such as The World Is A Beautiful Place & I am No Longer Afraid to Die, I Wrote Haikus About Cannibalism In Your Yearbook, Congratulations on Your Decision to Become a Pilot, ...And You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead, Godspeed You! Black Emperor, and Tool.
A real disappointment: (1) Unnecessarily overlong; unjustified >2,5hrs runtime (2) Poor substance; you may cut-off the first two-thirds without any impact on the story (3) Bad dialogues (4) Immensely boring; felt like awake-coma. Positives: Exceptional Casey Affleck & a quite beautiful cinematography. That's it. Ok; Robert "Bob" Newton Ford is a historical (dull & foolish) figure, but does it justify this? No, no.