not like stupid/dull, but as in movies that are so insanely packed with things and ideas and visuals they become…
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…
Dominik's best film.
Pitt's best performance.
Deakins' best work.
Affleck's perfect performance. That is not an exaggeration. Perfection is the only word for what he achieves here.
Made me forget, again, that I really don't like the western genre.
I've had this DVD sitting on my shelf for the better part of a year now, and for some reason I just never got around to watching this film at all. I thought it would be good, but I didn't expect it to completely blow me away. Everyone is just fantastic in this. Casey Affleck was born to play Robert Ford. Brad Pitt reaches for his inner Tyler Durden in this skin crawling portrayal of the infamous outlaw. The narration is fantastic. The music is spot on. The cinematography is haunting. Just, every little detail about this film felt absolutely perfect to me, I quickly fell in love with it, and I believe it to be one of the greatest…
”…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…
The rich source material, immaculate set design and gorgeous cinematography make this a great film, the poetic and reflective story and the superb performances make this a masterpiece. See this now
I felt it was a good time to revisit this film I saw pretty recently for a number of reasons. Firstly, I’d just picked up the blu-ray for pretty cheap, secondly there are a lot of thematic similarities to the recent film Public Enemies, thirdly it’s the fourth of July and I feel that this movie tells a quintessentially American tale of a man being elevated to the status of folk hero but being brought down by the society that celebrated him.
Film #29 of April 2016 Scavenger Hunt
Task #24 : A film about "high" art.
I don't know what high art meant but whatever let's go. This was good. I'm not going to say great because I'm a person who sometimes has trouble with the way things all unfold and this was a long process to get the story out. But with the very nuanced performance from Pitt as James and especially Affleck as Robert Ford, we have something pretty unique here. As westerns go, it's a gorgeous modern one at that thanks to Deakins' shots that last a lifetime. If you watch, make it for Affleck's performance. Great great great.
I was blind, but now I see.
kill yr idols.
Such a beautiful and haunting film. The kind of movie that sticks with you for days after seeing it. I can't believe Casey Affleck wasn't at least nominated for his performance, but it was a great year for movies and there was a lot of competition.
‘The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford’ is the sort of film where if you go into it wanting to find a masterpiece you probably can. All the elements are in there; it’s handsomely mounted, with reliably classy cinematography from Roger Deakins and a superb attention to detail in the production design. It also has a cast full to the brim with a-list stars all working at the top of their game, with Casey Affleck being the obvious stand-out but Brad Pitt also being very menacing and scary and Sam Rockwell further proving himself to be an underappreciated talent. On top of this you have a screenplay that really wants to be taken seriously, not least because…
I was kind of taken back by the pacing on my first viewing, I did not expect it to be what it was, I actually could not stand it on my first viewing. But after a year I bought the blu ray and rewatched it, and I have to say, its a masterpiece! Such an incredible and captivating film! The performances were brilliant especially from Casey Affleck, this has to be his best performance to date! And the cinematography by Roger Deakins is beautiful! Please do your self a favor and check out this underrated gem of cinema.
This is what happens when your car breaks down on a Sunday morning and you have nothing else to do…