Friday, October 16, 2009

The Coen Brothers: A Serious Man

The latest by the Coen brothers: A Serious Man (2009). What is the setting? The Twin Cities, Minnesota, 1967; specifically the Jewish community in and around St. Louis Park, just west of Minneapolis. Who is the protagonist? A well-meaning milquetoast named Larry Gopnik (played to Chaplinesque perfection by Michael Stuhlbarg). What is the plot? Well, in the beginning, Larry Gopnik -- to steal from Bob Dylan -- has no idea what kind of shit is about to go down. When things begin to go awry, he seeks wisdom from the rabbis of his shul. Is this a comedy? In a manner of speaking, most definitely yes. Is it also serious in its delvings? Indeed.

In this shot, Mrs. Samsky (Amy Landecker) "chats" with Larry (Stuhlbarg).

The movie is terrific. And that's about all I'll observe for now, until more people see it.

It is well-worth noting this, though -- Joel and Ethan Coen both attended St. Louis Park (Senior) High School -- as did Al Franken and Thomas Friedman.

Today's Rune: The Mystery Rune.


the walking man said...

I will admit they are two of my favorite movie makers, especially Joel. Loved Millers Crossing enough to buy it.

JR's Thumbprints said...

I still think the Coen brother's "Raising Arizona," and "Blood Simple," are their best work.

Johnny Yen said...

I've heard nothing but rave reviews on this one.

The Coen Brothers rarely miss. Which ones do I own? Raising Arizona, Miller's Crossing and O, Brother Where Art Thou and of course, The Big Lebowski.

Erik Donald France said...

Cheers, all -- thanks for the comments. Looks like there's at least one Coen bros. film for everybody. I also liked Burn After Reading and The Big Lebowski. The early ones are definitely good ones, too.