Every film that has ever been nominated for an Academy Award in any category. Enjoy!
The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford
Beyond the myth lies America's greatest betrayal
Everyone in 1880's America knows Jesse James. He's the nation's most notorious criminal, hunted by the law in 10 states. He's also the land's greatest hero, lauded as a Robin Hood by the public. Robert Ford? No one knows him. Not yet. But the ambitious 19-year-old aims to change that. He'll befriend Jesse, ride with his gang. And if that doesn't bring Ford fame, he'll find a deadlier way.
This is my first viewing since the film’s original release back in 2007 and I feel incredibly foolish for not having re-watched it sooner.
Quite simply The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford is a work of staggering brilliance and arguably the finest Western of the last twenty years. It is a film that exists on the border of two worlds - on one side it mythologizes the transitionary period of American history via the fable-building narration and dreamy photography, and on the other it slowly and methodically demystifies the characters that populate it and the falsehood of celebrity. It is this contradiction that is perhaps the most fascinating aspect of the film and mirrors the inner-conflict…
”…Rooms seemed hotter when he was in them. Rains fell straighter. Clocks slowed. Sounds were amplified…”
Okay, we know what’s going to happen, we know that a coward and weak character, named Robert Ford is going to kill the famous wild west outlaw Jesse James, we know who is who before even watching the film, Andrew Dominik’s audacious masterpiece has nothing to surprise, we know that there’s not going to be a twist, there’s not going to be a WTF moment, everything that we’re going to see is compressed in the title, that’s all.
So this film is not going to be about what’s going to happen…
"He's just a human being."
#5 on Berken's Favorite Movies Of All Time
In retrospect, it makes perfect sense how much I loved The Assassination Of Jesse James, given how Andrew Dominik here assimilates the strengths of my three favorite modern filmmakers and repurposes them into a new and potent concoction:
1. The slow-burning cynical character studies, thematic purpose, and powerful, naturalistic performances of Paul Thomas Anderson.
2. The stylized period dialogue and shocking outbursts of violence of the Coen brothers, not to mention the brilliant eye of their famed collaborator, cinematographer Roger Deakins.
3. The thoughtful, elegiac tone and elegant, repeated musical leitmotifs of Wong Kar-Wai, especially In The Mood For Love.
Granted, Dominik can't quite match Wong's skill…
The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford was a total afterthought in my film universe for years. The title was memorable for me simply because of it's length, but it carried no real resonance with me besides that. My expectations for the film were so low that, to be honest, when I read extremely positive reviews on Letterboxd I had trouble buying into it. How could a film mean so little to me, a film that sat so far off my radar that it practically didn't exist, yet be this good?
I looked up the director, found the name Andrew Dominik. Who? A name that meant absolutely nothing to me, a tiny filmography of three films associated…
What a breathtaking gorgeous picture The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford is. Unbound beauty. We are all aware by now of the director of photography, the master Roger Deakins, who has proved his astute sense of vista and marvelous photography, not only with The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford, but on many other occasions as well. I could watch a three hour movie of sunlight inundating empty rooms, people walking around corn fields with the wind whistling by or riding through snowy forests all the time. The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford is not just a movie, it's a moving painting bro. Hear me out!
As I said,…
Cinematography - Roger Deakins
Oh you have got to be joking, Academy.
Okay, now I can see why this film is held in such high regard. It's very rare in which you find a film is which nearly every single aspect of it is crafted to absolute perfection. That is not hyperbole - it really is that good. Especially the acting. Brad Pitt puts in a performance that for most actors would be seen as the performance of their career but it's hard to say with him since he's constantly outstanding. Here though, he manages to effortlessly switch between the swaggering, grinning outlaw he's cemented a reputation as and the psychotic, self-loathing depressive he's become because of his actions, and…
Well acted - Casey Affleck is brilliant as a creepy Robert Ford - great cinematography and a good story. The only downside was that at 2 and a half hours it's a long watch and a little slow moving. Overall a good film, beautifully presented.
This luxurious movie was a fascinating, gorgeous story of hero worship and all its consequences, with terrific performances by Affleck, Pitt, Delahunt, et al. and lovely accompanying music. But it was wayyyyyy too long, by at least 40 percent in the part preceding the assassination, and the dialog was frequently anachronistic, which detracted from the otherwise painstaking authenticity of sets and costumes. Still, the experience was enjoyable (until it got so drawn-out I was checking the clock) and quite memorable. I love a movie that lingers the next day.
Definitely overlong (its title also is), but in spite of that, The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford is a stunningly shot and meditative film that besides its brilliant ending, also benefits from a really solid group of actors who did their best. Brad Pitt and Casey Affleck delivered truly fantastic pieces of acting.
One of the most underrated films of the last ten years.
It continues to baffle me that this film flew as far under the radar as it did--Dominik's masterpice at once carries all the fingerprints of the finest moments of New Hollywood filmmaking, but with the DNA of a post-Soderbergh, post-Sundance creative industry, except...you know...for $30 million dollars. Deakins' homage to daguerrotype photography, the performances of Affleck and Pitt (and Rockwell!), Nick Cave and Warren Ellis' soundtrack, and no no, just about everything on the screen and out of the speakers can attest to this.
I first saw the film screened on 35mm at 5th Avenue Cinema on the Portland State University campus, and the room was half empty with a tepid audience seemingly fearful of the daunting two-hour-forty minute runtime…
Just because you killed Jesse James, doesn't make you Jesse James.
Steeped in authenticity and high production.
"There would be no eulogies for Bob, no photographs of his body would be sold in sundries stores, no people would crowd the streets in the rain to see his funeral cortege, no biographies would be written about him, no children named after him, no one would ever pay twenty-five cents to stand in the rooms he grew up in."
This is a film that i have been meaning to re-watch for quite a while. I saw it back a few years ago and to say the truth i didn't remember that much about it though i had a clear sense that i had liked it back then. I was interested to watch it again because it seems that with…
- 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…
- There Will Be Blood
- Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
- Mulholland Drive
- Children of Men
- No Country for Old Men
1. THERE WILL BE BLOOD (2007) by Paul Thomas Anderson
IMDb: 8.1 | RT: 91% || Points: 2110 | Peak:…