Every film that has ever been nominated for an Academy Award in any category. Enjoy!
There's only one thing stranger than what's going on inside his head. What's going on outside.
A renowned New York playwright is enticed to California to write for the movies and discovers the hellish truth of Hollywood.
Barton Fink is packed full of symbolism, allegory, and open-ended questions. About one man's struggles as a screenwriter in Hollywood, the film is at once realism and surrealism; comedy and tragedy. Willing you to discern meaning behind images and lines, Joel and Ethan Coen tease the viewer with a multitude of possible interpretations of their story and its characters. Littered with references to other films, novels, and poems, the viewing experience is overwhelming but rewarding.
With exhilarating performances from John Turturro, John Goodman, Michael Lerner, and Judy Davis, this is very much a character driven piece. Exploring the "life of the mind" from different angles, we are introduced to a variety of characters, each with their own issues and secrets.…
Barton Fink is no less than a directorial masterpiece. You can say what you will about the characters, even about the story itself, but there is no denying that it is masterfully executed in the way that only the Coens could manage. What struck me most is their skillfulness showing action off screen or behind a wall and give their audience just enough visual clues to leave them jumping with anticipation (the best example in their filmography is the hotel door scene in No Country for Old Men.) This works so very subtly and so very well in countless scenes. Consider, if you will, the box that John Goodman's character gives Barton. We can only help but wonder, what's inside…
Ingeniously written and directed by the Coen brothers, Barton Fink is set in 1941, initially in New York and we follow the playwright filled with social concerns, Barton Fink, who was a big hit on Broadway and immediately calls the attention of Tinseltown. Hired by Hollywood to write a wrestling film Barton swaps the pollution of the city for the stardom of the movies.
When Federico Fellini had no idea on what to do with his next film, he created 8½, which portrayed an out-of-ideas director who didn't know what to do with his next film. When the Coen brothers had no idea on what to do with their next film, they created Barton Fink, which portrays an out-of-ideas screenwriter…
It has been almost twenty years since I saw Barton Fink. Back then in my early twenties I obviously missed something. I seem to remember it leaving me a little muddled and confused, and with this film coming fairly soon after my favorite Coen's film, Miller's Crossing, I was a little underwhelmed. I'd like to think my tastes have matured a bit since then and as I listed my Coen Brothers ranking last night, I was surprised at the reaction to my low rating for this. Rewatches especially after a long time can be beneficial, so imagine my surprise when I awoke after night-shift to find this just starting on Sky Movies.
While still not as appreciated as Miller's Crossing…
Being a big fan of most of the Coen Brothers films I've seen, I decided it's time I get on finishing their canon. Barton Fink along with Intolerable Cruelty are the last two I needed to see. I've put off the latter due to word of mouth stating it's probably their worst film along with The Ladykillers, the only film of theirs I've seen that I didn't at least like. When it comes to this film I was just waiting until I had access to it, and that access finally came in the form of Netflix streaming. Barton Fink is trademark Coens. Dark humor, satire, great performances, and it this case a pretty twisted and unsettling narrative.
Renowned New York…
"Right now, the contents of your head are property of Capitol Pictures. And if I was you, I'd speak up, and pretty goddamn fast."
Today, I have achieved two significant things: I have Finally finished the Coen Brothers' filmography, and I have finally watched 1,000 films!
My, what a fitting film for this occasion. Barton Fink is a film that defies classification, and a near-masterpiece of surrealist and postmodern cinema. Everything is so meticulously crafted, and the film works in all its absurdity, horror, allegory, and comedy. I can't really think of anything else to describe it. It simply blew me away.
Despite having heard about this film, I really didn't know much of what it actually contained. I just…
I'm going to circle back and review this later after proper reflection, but I was amazed at how fast this movie feels considering how deliberately it moves. One might think it's slow, and some of the scenes, shots and camera movements are, but the film is not slow in any way.
The conflicts in the script abound: art vs. commerce; manhood; authenticity; fiction vs. reality; loneliness; escape; the perks of suffering, etc. Can art even exist without pain preceding it?
It's incredible how self-assured even the early Coens' films are: this one is 20+ years old and still feels as timeless as the day it premiered. Brilliant beyond what my words afford me at the moment.
"I'll show you the life of the mind."
This movie is fucking genius. At first you write it off (no pun intended) as simply being a clever satire of Hollywood screenwriting, but then it does a few backflips and morphs into a multi-headed beast with several valid interpretations. Granted, the film also works if you just take everything literally, which is points for the Coens, but when has taking things literally ever been fun? I remember seeing most of this film a couple years ago and really digging it, so I'm not sure whether this counts as a re-watch or not, but I suppose that's beside the point. What's striking though, is that with a second(ish) viewing, I still can't call any one interpretation my own. Every time…
Significantly stranger and better than I thought it would be, in ways I didn't anticipate. I felt a little disappointed right when it was over- but now I feel pretty great about it. Now I have seen all the major Coen films. I still feel kind of over their old testament moralism- but this film finds a nice way to rise above that by making it into a batshit surreal nightmare, reminiscent of Repulsion, and even feeling like a possible influence on later films like Mullholland Drive or The Double.
I thought from the beginning that they were going to turn him into a martyr, which bothered me since he's clearly a stand in for Joel- yet they made him look like a total schmuck. Perhaps their most self aware film?
Pretty good, pretty funny. Better than most films, but just not all that memorable. But as a start to Coen Brothers style of films, it's not bad. It's good, and I won't object to seeing it again. However, I never find myself going out of my way to do so.
Another Coen gem.
This review reportedly contains spoilers. I can handle the truth.
Might be the defining Coen brothers film. Every time I think I'm close to grasping what the film is all about, I hit a brick wall, an inconsistency in my reading of the film, but I suspect that's very much the point. The characters of the Coens' always end up at the mercy of forces beyond their understanding and with Barton Fink we get a glimpse of how that feels.
Following up to the extraordinary Miller's Crossing and written during a three week period while the screenplay to the epic mafia drama was still in works, the 1991 Barton Fink is both unique and completely captivating. Dark and emotional, Barton Fink bares many resemblances to Kubrick's The Shining and to a lesser extent, Billy Wilder's Sunset Blvd. A masterpiece of filmmaking, with remarkable performances from the underrated John Turturro and the fantastic and endearing John Goodman, Barton Fink effectively questions the extent to which movies are realistic through its dark and clouded portrayal of Hollywood.
Common man and amateur playwright Barton Fink is given a contract at Hollywood to write scripts for various films in return for one thousand dollars…
- The Racket
- 7th Heaven
- Sunrise: A Song of Two Humans
- Chang: A Drama of the Wilderness
- Only God Forgives
- Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas
- Spring Breakers
- A Field in England
Recently, I've become aware that certain films are able to transcend the medium by being completely self-assured in their atmospheres…
- Citizen Kane
- 2001: A Space Odyssey
- Tokyo Story
- The Rules of the Game