Out of the Oscar nominated picks, I wanted to see Juno, There Will Be Blood and No Country for Old Men, but I thought I'd rather watch Juno because it is a comedy. But since the friends I was going with already saw it, I was fine with seeing this one. It being a drama with blood and guns, I expected a nuance and refined drama and that is what I got. It holds. After the movie was over, I discovered it was based on the 2005 novel by Cormen McCarthy and directed by the Coen Brothers. The movie starts off with brutal death, which there will plenty throughout. The key players are police officer Ed Tom Bell (Tommy Lee Jones), Anton Chigurth (sounds like 'sugar') [Javier Bardem], and Llewelyn (sounds like 'Lou Ellen') Moss [Josh Brolin]. Ed is your basic decent man, Llewelyn is your 'rough-around-the-edges' hero, and Anton is an insane killer that you will grow to hate.
Set in Texas. The basic plot is that Vietnam veteran Llewelyn finds a murder site of Mexicans and heroin, while shooting deer. Only one man is alive and he asks for water, Llewelyn blows him off. He gets a couple of guns and $2 million in cash in a suitcase and goes back home. He doesn't give his wife (Kelly Macdonald) much info and hides the stash. At night, he can't sleep, so he returns to the site with water but the dude is already dead. Meanwhile, Anton gets his murdering on. He has his own sick logic. With a gas store attendant, he gambles his life with a coin toss. His only form of 'mercy.' Because Llewelyn has the money, he is after him. What I like about the movie is that the main characters barely share any screen time with each other but they know the rules of the game, they know what it is at stake. It skips over the usual explaining and leaves some things to fill in for the viewer.
Basically Llewelyn goes a running, especially after a car follows him shooting at him and he chased by a cute pitbull down the river. I saw cute because it follows him swimming through the river. Ed and his deputy or whatever Wendell (Garrett Dillahunt) go to the murder site and smartly figure out two different shoot-outs occurred. The night Llewelyn went back, Anton shoots down two 'big boss' men. I thought the small Texan police corp would fail at CSI with the lack of whatever big city agencies have. It is funny to me that Garrett Dillahunt plays a 'aw-shucks' simple man, when he usually plays these sophisticated sinister villains like on "4000" and "Terminator: The Sarah Conner Chronicles." Back to the plot, Llewelyn sends his wife off to her mother who is played by the 58-year old Beth Grant--in a wig and supposedly way older. I recognized her rather quickly. I also recognized Stephen Root (Office Space, Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story, and "King of the Hill") as 'Man who hires Wells.' Wells, being Carson Wells played by Woody Harrelson. As for Brolin, I see no one else playing Llewelyn, he plays him with this bravado and urgency.
I hate the character of Anton to the core, in a good way, as we are suppose to. He is a killing machine, smug and stuck-up and you just want to tear his head off. I didn't include any pictures of him oon this review because I can't stand his ugly ass haircut or face. The movie becomes basic cat and mouse between Llewelyn and Anton, with basic scene 'checkups' on Ed Tom Bell. I saw this movie with my gay guy friends and we agree, there are plenty of cuties in this movie. Other than Josh Brolin, there is Garrett Dillahunt, Woody Harrelson and Zach Hopkins as 'Strangled Deputy.' But no nude or shirtless scenes, except for saggy ass Bardem. If you have a weak stomach and not for many graphic deaths, this movie is not for you. For me, it's business as usual. If it is for the story, it is worth it. It is a good movie but...
For those who have seen the movie, I wish Anton died. I really did. He deserved this big elaborate death, but I guess the character is always open for a sequel. As for Llewlyn's death, I feel a bit cheated. We follow this supposed hero through a lot of things and then suddenly he isn't the focus anymore. I hate when movies do that. Quick show of his dead body and move on to Ed Tom Bell. The movie is worth watching, it is a thriller and a chiller. Above is a photo of Llewlyn's wife, in a scene the psycho confronts her and offers her a chance at her life with a coin toss. She refuses to play his silly game and whether she dies or not is up to the viewer.