Alexander Van Zyl’s review published on Letterboxd:
Not that the Coen brothers released films that one would describe as 'average' in quality, in the past - actually quite the contrary; I think they have (mostly) all been exceptional. But this one really was something extraordinary
Their films (like most films) always have some plot that they run on, but they also never feel as if they are restricted by them. This film, while still running on a plot, is by far their most 'loosely structured. The character never seemed to follow the film's direction, but rather like the film is following its character's - and what a character to follow! Llewyn Davis felt so relatable for me. We're both searching for something that seem out of reach; we both have a dream that keeps us going. And the fact that Oscar Isaac was able to disappear into the character, and portray those desires so well just further proves why he is one of the best working today.
The overall look of the film is something I also really admired; the blue/ gray toned lighting gave the film a cold vibe in some scenes, but also an incredible warmth in others. Another thing I adored just as much, if not more, was the absolutely stunning music - which Isaac (who I had no idea had such a beautiful voice) performed beautifully. And the cherry on top of that was the fact that we got a short song from two other talent artists in Justin Timberlake and Carey mulligan.
The film really does so much right it's scary, but it still didn't, imo, reach the quality that the filmmakers masterpiece Fargo did. But it still is none the less a film of incredible quality, and is one that I will undoubtably revisit one day.
The fact that it has taken me this long to watch it makes me want to participate in a coin toss with a certain character from another film, hoping for a bad outcome for me as punishment for my negligence.