“I call that bold talk for a one-eyed fat man!”
I went into the Coen Bros. movie entitled True Grit with no knowledge of the John Wayne movie or the book by Charles Portis. So, this review will not be in depth as much as it could be.
The Coen Bros. and westerns seem to go hand in hand and overall the movie wasn’t really a western it was more of a young adult book crossed with a road trip movie with smatterings of a Western thrown in for good measure.
The basic plot: Fourteen year old Mattie Ross’s father is gunned down by Tom Chaney played by Joss Brolin and she promptly decides to go after him enlisting the help of Federal Marshall Rooster Cogburn and Texas Ranger Leboeuf. Hallee Stienfeld plays Mattie Ross to a T and is highly enjoyable to watch and if anyone came out of Tron Legacy wondering if Jeff Bridges phoned it in, he’s the exact opposite here and puts a lot of weight into Rooster Cogburn. Matt Damon was fine as Leboeuf.
The beginning and middle of the movie are the strong points, dialogue, sets and acting is superb while the the third act and the end is uneven. Josh Brolin appears just long enough to show that Tom Chaney is not the smartest bulb in the bunch and there is no hurray at his demise. Once that plays out the rest of the movie takes an unexpected turn in Mattie’s direction. I don’t know how the book ended but the movie just sorta petters out and ends.
Overall, it was a good movie, replay value only to catch up on dialogue one may have missed.
Oh Brother Where Art Thou and Raising Arizona had better pacing and makes them the most enjoyable Coen movies in my mind.