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23 of 24 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Stark and Bleak Realism
This is not an easy movie to watch - it is rife with tension and gore - but it is a thought-provoking one. With stark and bleak realism, it shows what can happen when criminals clash with other criminals, law-enforcers, crafty wild cards, and naive bystanders sucked into the criminal vortex. It shows what can happen when a relatively good man succumbs to the temptation...
Published on March 29 2008 by Verve

versus
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Bon film mais livraison pas sécurisée
J'ai commandé 2 Steelbook de ce film pour moi et un cousin, malheureusement un de ceux-ci est arrivé avec la tranche supérieur au-dessus de bande bleu enfoncé.

Quel dommage
Published 20 months ago by Abi04


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23 of 24 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Stark and Bleak Realism, March 29 2008
By 
Verve (Owen Sound, Ontario, Canada) - See all my reviews
This review is from: No Country for Old Men (DVD)
This is not an easy movie to watch - it is rife with tension and gore - but it is a thought-provoking one. With stark and bleak realism, it shows what can happen when criminals clash with other criminals, law-enforcers, crafty wild cards, and naive bystanders sucked into the criminal vortex. It shows what can happen when a relatively good man succumbs to the temptation to take an illegal route out of poverty, and, crafty though he is, finds himself up against a diabolically smart and ruthless sociopath - someone not likewise burdened by such distractions as a conscience or concern for loved ones. It shows how utterly cold a sociopath can be, and what a trail of destruction he can leave in his wake. Nothing is glossed here. The good guys are not better shots. Bodies do not conveniently disappear. Killings are not veiled or glorified or antiseptic, but graphic, tragic, and messy. Unlike so many action movies, this one does not lean on a punchy soundtrack or quick scene changes to heighten its impact. Rather, it moves in relative real time, and its quietness and its unblinking stare at events are quite dramatic enough. The ending is atypical, too - more of a whimper than a bang - and I think that to be disappointed by this is to miss the movie's point. In this movie, brutality is not depicted as rollicking entertainment, but as the messy, ugly, unfair, disgusting, and just plain depressing thing that it is.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Respectable Interpretation of Novel, March 26 2008
By 
Ian Gordon Malcomson (Victoria, BC) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: No Country for Old Men (DVD)
What's the power these days of a well-written novel like Cormac McCarthy's "No Country For Old Man"? Basically, the capacity to re-invent itself as a blockbuster movie with few alterations of the plot. Here is a list of my observations about the quality of the movie version of what I consider to be a very finely-crafted psychological thriller. The big question, as always, is does the movie do justice to its predecessor in terms of making vital connections?
A. The movie's poignant portrayal of the arid Southwest lands captures the same feeling of a moral wasteland that served McCarthy so well as the setting for his story. The viewer quickly gets the idea that nothing good can come out of this bleak landscape;
B. The movie presents a visceral picture of violence in action. As in the novel, it attempts to display it as both an arbitrary and ruthless behaviour being acted in a wildwest fashion. The law is always around in a philosophical capacity but never really engaged in physically protecting the innocent. McCarthy, in all his works, sees the world as a battle for the survival of the fittest.
C. The movie does a reasonable job in following the storyline of a man named Moss who comes across cache of $2.4 million dollars in drug money while hunting in the desert. The surrounding circumstances of the find and the battle that ensues between various characters to hold on or seize the loot are downright ugly and violent.
D. The movie gives the sheriff a similar contemplative role where wisdom, rather than valour, becomes the means by which people can sometimes reach old age. Tommy Lee Jones captures that mood very effectively in his layback role as the sheriff who is moving into retirement without too much regret.
E. The movie does a faithful job in typecasting the roles of the psychopath(Bardem) and bounty hunter(Harrelson). Javier Bardem, as Chigurh(sounds like sugar), comes across as that brooding character that deeply embodies evil while thinly cloaked in disarming pleasantness. Life for Chigurh comes down to killing others in order to get the money. There is that curious moment, however, in the film when Chigurh is seriously down on his luck and has to pay some kids to help him get away.
F. The movie, like the novel, refrains from providing closure for its audience. For McCarthy, any sense of justice comes from the evil that bad people bring on themselves by hurting other people. Unfortunately, there are no winners in this bloody fray except those who choose to say out of it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Of what is past, or passing, or to come, Nov. 8 2010
This review is from: No Country for Old Men (DVD)
Being the arthouse cinema fan that I am, over the last 10 or so years I would occasionally watch a Hollywood movie for entertainment, but I gave up any hope of seeing anything truly artistic from that source. It was about time I was chastened for my arrogance, and sure enough, I came across 'No Country for Old Men' a couple of weeks ago. What attracted me was the title lifted from Yeats; I correctly guessed that it must have been the title of the book on which the film was based, but at that stage I had not yet read the book nor was even aware of its existence.

What a feast! A violent modern western on the surface; a dark and bitter existential meditation underneath; actors working their socks off; solid direction and camera work; a minimalistic soundtrack that is as un-Hollywoodian as they get; all of this works together and keeps one impressed non-stop.

The layered structure of the film is quite ambitious, but thankfully, the directors do not spell things out for the viewer. If anything, certain things were made less obvious than they are in the book, and that enhanced the overall impact. For example, it takes the full length of the film, including the paradoxical ending, to bring the viewer to the realisation that the protagonist of the story is Sheriff Bell - the least likely of the three candidates for that role. This realisation has quite an impact by itself, but it also takes care of the loose ends of the surface plot - not by tying them up in any logical way but by rendering them irrelevant, which is so much better. The film is about the sheriff, and as far as he is concerned, there are no loose ends left: he lost on all counts; the bad guy won. The book is rather more direct about matters like who got the money in the end, and after the film this certainly felt like a weakness: what is the point of trying not to disappoint the readers who do not get the point, if you know what I mean... To be fair, the book is not always direct, but the film is even less so. For instance, McCarthy pointedly avoided describing the deaths of Moss and his wife in gory detail (in sharp contrast to the overall style of the book); the death of the former is even narrated by a third party rather than directly by the author. The film goes further, merely implying both these deaths.

The tense scene where Chigurh and the sheriff appear to be standing at the opposite sides of a motel room door is not to be found in the book. There are several ways of interpreting what happened there, and each of the possibilities enriches the story in its own way. My guess is that the two characters are not actually present there at the same time and that when Chigurh calmly observes the flicker of light through the punched-out hole in the lock, this is in fact just an image in Sheriff Bell's mind - a visual manifestation of his fear, which we are given a chance to see as yet another hint at the fact that the sheriff is, after all, the main character of the story. Of course, this cannot be literally the image in his mind because the sheriff does not know what Chigurh looks like - but the viewer does...

A few more words about that infamous ending. I always like it when a film ends at an unexpected point, but here this old trick achieves so much more than delivering a parting surprise. Yes, the final sequence comes from the book verbatim, but unlike the book, the film is wide open at that point because of some small changes to the plot, so what the viewer gets is an anticlimax by the action genre standards and a knockout artistically. A character describing his dream is a staple of arthouse cinema, and here we get not one but two dreams, told to us by the downbeat Tommy Lee Jones, alone in the frame, in such a thick Texan accent that I had to rewind and switch on the subtitles. Everything falls into place, except for the things that, as it dawns on us, do not matter. And can there be a better punch line than "And then I woke up", followed immediately by the credits?
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best movie of 2007, Jan. 26 2008
By 
Sebastien Lessard (Richmond, BC Canada) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: No Country for Old Men (DVD)
Having read and enjoyed the book, I was looking forward to seeing the movie. After hearing all the critical praise let me tell you that it's all true. The acting is flawless with Javier Bardem being one of the most bone chilling villains in recent film history. A lot of this movie is unconventional but that's what makes it great.

Go see it!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars You can't stop what's coming, April 8 2012
By 
Steven Aldersley (Oshawa, Ontario, Canada) - See all my reviews
(TOP 50 REVIEWER)    (REAL NAME)   
***Spoilers Within***

Oscar ceremonies are sometimes dominated by one or two films because the opposition is weak, but that definitely wasn't the case in 2008. Nominees included No Country for Old Men, There Will Be Blood, Juno, The Diving Bell and the Butterfly, Ratatouille, Once, The Bourne Ultimatum, Into the Wild, Atonement, Michael Clayton, Eastern Promises and American Gangster.

I was torn at the time because I couldn't decide whether I wanted There Will Be Blood or No Country for Old Men to win for Best Picture. In hindsight, my two favorite films from that year are Juno and No Country for Old Men. I think the Academy got it right for once by awarding No Country for Old Men the Best Picture Oscar and Daniel Day-Lewis Leading Actor.

So why do I think that No Country for Old Men deserved its win?

The film contains so many strong elements. It gave us three memorable characters and expertly combined their three viewpoints to give us a compelling story. Roger Deakins did another wonderful job showing us the bleak Texas landscape, while the direction and writing were both superb.

Llewelyn Moss (Brolin) makes a discovery while hunting for antelope. After tracking an injured animal, he finds what appears to be the result of a failed drug deal. Five trucks are surrounded by corpses and he deduces that the last man standing would have looked for shade. He eventually locates the final corpse and finds a case containing two million dollars. Moss lives in a trailer with his wife and the money represents a chance to completely change his life.

The most interesting character is Anton Chigurh (Bardem). We see him captured by police at the start of the film, but he escapes and kills a deputy in the process. He is extremely violent and his motives are unclear. At times he appears supernatural in the way he evades capture. Is he supposed to represent Death or the Devil? Bardem makes Chigurh one of the most memorable villains ever to appear on screen. There's a scene which rivals Tarantino's farmhouse scene in Inglourious Basterds in terms of tension. Chigurh has a conversation with a gas station owner and it ends with a coin flip. The scene is both absurd and chilling at the same time. We know what's at stake.

The other major character is Sheriff Ed Tom Bell (Jones). He's old, wise and extremely competent. Some of his choices show that he's more concerned with self-preservation than pursuing criminals, but he somehow gets the job done. One of his strengths is the ability to reconstruct crime scenes. He has a dry sense of humor and uncanny instincts.

The first part of the story focuses on Moss. He's an experienced tracker and a Vietnam veteran and we see him trying to evade pursuit. At first, he doesn't know who will be coming after him, but eventually learns that it's Chigurh. Instead of simply leaving the country, he decides to face Chigurh himself. That might seem to be a stupid choice, but Moss does have some intelligence and appears able to take care of himself.

Chigurh also seems highly competent and we get the sense that he's being doing what he does for a very long time. His pursuit is relentless. When he is injured, he's able to take care of his own wounds. He does bleed, but there's still the sense that he either is, or he at least represents, a supernatural force.

I won't reveal any more of the plot. I have heard two complaints about the film. One is the level of violence present and the other is the unusual ending. I think the ending is partly showing how unpredictable life can be, but I understand the complaints. I thought the ending was appropriate and my only regret was that I couldn't watch these characters for longer.

No Country for Old Men is many things. On the surface, it's the story of an extended chase. The Coen brothers said that it is a story of a good, evil and something between the two. Moss can be perceived as good or evil, but he's definitely committing a crime.

Some of the scenes require us to pay close attention to the events and contain very little dialogue. It reminds me of the opening sequence in There Will Be Blood in that way. It succeeds because of the writing and the tension that's present throughout the story. If you enjoy thrillers, this is one of the best I have seen.

The Blu-ray presentation is just about perfect. Every little sound comes across clearly and the Texas scenery looks breathtaking at times.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Bon film mais livraison pas sécurisée, April 21 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: No Country for Old Men Steelbook (Steelbook Edition) [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)
J'ai commandé 2 Steelbook de ce film pour moi et un cousin, malheureusement un de ceux-ci est arrivé avec la tranche supérieur au-dessus de bande bleu enfoncé.

Quel dommage
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5.0 out of 5 stars This Steelbook suspense movie was excellent in video/audio quality for viewing on HD screen, July 19 2014
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This review is from: No Country for Old Men Steelbook (Steelbook Edition) [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)
This Steelbook suspense movie was excellent in video/audio quality for viewing on HD screen. Criminal story was entertaining; with lots of action, and sustained suspense, and some surprising twists, as the story unfolded. Details about 'YOU CAN"T STOP WHAT'S COMING' film can be read elsewhere on the Internet.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Yes the Coens are Back, March 16 2008
When the Coen's are on there are none better. I wait with baited breath every time something new from them comes out, I know I will either be bitterly dissapointed (Lavender Hill Mob, O Brother Where Art Thou), or will soon be witnessing another soon to be personal favorite (Fargo, Raising Arizona, Miller's Crossing, Blood Simple). This is another great one from the Coen's. While this could be described as just a violent thriller, it is done with such great pacing and acting that it makes it a great one. The real star of course is the purely evil character played by Javier Bardem, who is so calm and nice before he kills you and who has his own warped sense of principles. "I have to kill you I promised your husband". If you see the movie you will know how warped that statement is, but you see his twisted logic. Other times he let's fate decide by a coin flip. I would not put this ahead of Fargo (their movie that should have won the Oscar) but it is very chilling and very good.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great movie, April 23 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: No Country for Old Men Steelbook (Steelbook Edition) [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)
Awesome movie.and steelbook in amazing shape. Came fast and was a great price. Definitely glad I made the purchase. :)
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5.0 out of 5 stars Call it...friend-o, March 28 2014
By 
Mikki D. "Mick" (London Ontario Canada) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: No Country for Old Men Steelbook (Steelbook Edition) [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)
I would recommend to anyone to buy this steel book. The artwork is amazing. At $14.99 it's a steal, and Don't get me started on the movie. Trust me. You won't regret it.
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