No Country for Old Men Reviews

Bob Mondello
NPR.org
Top Critic
October 18, 2008

For a film that traffics in implacable malice, this movie remains remarkably grounded in the everyday.

Christopher Orr
The New Republic
Top Critic
September 18, 2008

McCarthy's ferocious tale gives the Coens room to unleash their cinematic gifts, but keeps them from wandering too far afield and losing themselves in the marshes of technical prowess or easy irony.

Geoff Andrew
Time Out
Top Critic
January 18, 2008

A masterly tale of the good, the deranged and the doomed that inflects the raw violence of the west with a wry acknowledgement of the demise of codes of honour, this is frighteningly intelligent and imaginative.

Full Review | Original Score: 5/6
Peter Rainer
Christian Science Monitor
Top Critic
November 20, 2007

With its dizzying alternations of comedy and horror, the film is unmistakably a Coen brothers movie -- albeit a much better one than they've made in a while.

Full Review | Original Score: A
Harper Baines
St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Top Critic
November 17, 2007

No Country for Old Men looks into the unfathomable depths of evil and poses existential questions about human destiny. Meanwhile, it takes your breath away.

Claudia Puig
USA Today
Top Critic
November 17, 2007

Joel and Ethan Coen have directed their best film since Fargo more than a decade ago.

Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Rene Rodriguez
Miami Herald
Top Critic
November 16, 2007

What makes the movie a masterpiece, however, is not the Coens' supreme command of their craft in these scenes, but their willingness to embrace the resigned worldview of McCarthy's novel.

| Original Score: 4/4
Amy Biancolli
Houston Chronicle
Top Critic
November 16, 2007

[It] just might be the Coen brothers' singular mythic masterwork.

Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
Tom Long
Detroit News
Top Critic
November 16, 2007

A cold, rough look at the dissolution of just about everything. It will bother you afterward. It should.

Full Review | Original Score: A
Terry Lawson
Detroit Free Press
Top Critic
November 16, 2007

Bardem is nothing less than the best movie villain since Anthony Hopkins slipped out of Hannibal Lecter's manacles, scary-smart and horrifyingly appealing, and Brolin is nothing short of a revelation.

Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
Lisa Kennedy
Denver Post
Top Critic
November 16, 2007

This movie is that stunning.

Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
Jonathan Rosenbaum
Chicago Reader
Top Critic
November 16, 2007

The storytelling is fluid, especially when directors Joel and Ethan Coen start eliding some of the murders and ask us to imagine them for ourselves.

Moira MacDonald
Seattle Times
Top Critic
November 16, 2007

The mood is darker and quieter than the Coens usually present, though some of the dialogue has a deadpan humor.

Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Bruce Newman
San Jose Mercury News
Top Critic
November 16, 2007

Working from a Cormac McCarthy novel that has the heedless, headlong force of an action movie screenplay, Joel and Ethan Coen have improved upon the original by giving it a visual lyricism to match McCarthy's verbal barrage.

Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
Roger Moore
Orlando Sentinel
Top Critic
November 15, 2007

The story is vintage McCarthy in its sense of place and its poetic voice. And it is vintage Coens for some of those same traits, and its cruel, graphic violence.

Full Review | Original Score: 5/5
Richard Schickel
TIME Magazine
Top Critic
November 12, 2007

The Coens are wintry and dead calm ironists, and their movie is finally less an assault on our sensibilities than a subtle -- and possibly permanent -- insinuation into our consciousnesses.

Peter Howell
Toronto Star
Top Critic
November 9, 2007

No Country for Old Men may just be the year's best picture.

Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
Mick LaSalle
San Francisco Chronicle
Top Critic
November 9, 2007

The Coen brothers' screenplay is faithful to McCarthy without being obsequious. In filming it, they play it straight, and the touches of signature humor that are there don't seem like flashes of style, but organic and right.

Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
Stephen Whitty
Newark Star-Ledger
Top Critic
November 9, 2007

No Country for Old Men is based on a novel by Cormac McCarthy, but it shows all the Coen strengths. One is a genuine interest in the way people work.

Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Lou Lumenick
New York Post
Top Critic
November 9, 2007

No Country for Old Men is the first movie I've seen in a very long while that deserves to be called a masterpiece. It's such a stunning achievement in storytelling.

Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
Colin Covert
Minneapolis Star Tribune
Top Critic
November 9, 2007

The film is as lean and mean as a barbed-wire necktie, darkly funny and much deeper than the average crime thriller.

| Original Score: 4/4
Chris Vognar
Dallas Morning News
Top Critic
November 9, 2007

The Coens are geniuses at creating tension through editing. No Country has craft and atmosphere aplenty.

Full Review | Original Score: B
Michael Phillips
Chicago Tribune
Top Critic
November 9, 2007

As pure craftsmanship, No Country for Old Men is as good as we've ever gotten from Joel and Ethan Coen.

Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Ty Burr
Boston Globe
Top Critic
November 9, 2007

The Coens understand the stark immediacy of this tale, and they visualize it with brilliantly judged details.

Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
Kenneth Turan
Los Angeles Times
Top Critic
November 9, 2007

An intense, nihilistic thriller as well as a model of implacable storytelling, this is a film you can't stop watching even though you very much wish you could.

Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic
November 9, 2007

No Country for Old Men is as good a film as the Coen brothers, Joel and Ethan, have ever made, and they made Fargo.

Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
Steven Rea
Philadelphia Inquirer
Top Critic
November 9, 2007

An eerily quiet, bracingly bloody, and expertly laid-out adaptation of the Cormac McCarthy novel.

Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Joe Morgenstern
Wall Street Journal
Top Critic
November 8, 2007

This is the best film the Coen brothers have done since their glory days of Fargo and The Big Lebowski, maybe the best they've done, period.

A.O. Scott
New York Times
Top Critic
November 8, 2007

For formalists -- those moviegoers sent into raptures by tight editing, nimble camera work and faultless sound design -- No Country for Old Men is pure heaven.

Dana Stevens
Slate
Top Critic
November 8, 2007

The result, while it may be their most ambitious and successful film in years, remains just a Coen brothers movie, a curio to collect rather than an experience to remember.

Randy Cordova
Arizona Republic
Top Critic
November 8, 2007

Bardem's unnerving performance is the one that will stay with you.

Full Review | Original Score: 4.5/5
Jan Stuart
Newsday
Top Critic
November 8, 2007

This acerbic, darkly poetic Coen brothers' take on the Cormac McCarthy novel is calculated to give you the willies.

Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Keith Phipps
AV Club
Top Critic
November 8, 2007

No Country For Old Men bears McCarthy's unmistakable stamp, and the equally unmistakable mark of filmmakers Joel and Ethan Coen, making a strong return after a few years off.

Full Review | Original Score: A
Stephen Hunter
Washington Post
Top Critic
November 8, 2007

I just don't like it very much.

Christy Lemire
Associated Press
Top Critic
November 7, 2007

It's their best work in a while and it's probably going to end up being the year's best movie.

Lisa Schwarzbaum
Entertainment Weekly
Top Critic
November 7, 2007

This measured yet excitingly tense, violent yet maturely sorrowful thriller marks the first time the filmmakers have faithfully adapted somebody else's work to their own specifications and considerable strengths.

Full Review | Original Score: A-
Rex Reed
New York Observer
Top Critic
November 7, 2007

The ending is so lame it made me feverish. Then I remembered the perfection that came before it, and concluded that this is, without question, the best movie ever made by the eccentric Coen brothers.

James Berardinelli
ReelViews
Top Critic
November 7, 2007

The Coens know how a thing or two about pacing, and it's relentless here. The story is full of unexpected twists and switchbacks, and opportunities for the audience to gear down and take a breath are few and far between.

Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Richard Roeper
Ebert & Roeper
Top Critic
November 6, 2007

This film is an evil delight; adapted from Cormack McCarthy's book, it's filled with suspense, pitch-black humor and one of the most memorable villains in recent cinema.

Anthony Lane
New Yorker
Top Critic
November 5, 2007

If I want wry lawmen and smart, calculating fugitives, I'll get them from Elmore Leonard; and, if I want Leonard, I'll take him neat, rather than slow-filtered, drop by drop, through a layer of Faulkner, then laced with the Book of Jeremiah.

David Edelstein
New York Magazine/Vulture
Top Critic
November 5, 2007

Here's the gist: It's a near masterpiece.

Peter Travers
Rolling Stone
Top Critic
November 1, 2007

The Coens squeeze us without mercy in a vise of tension and suspense, but only to force us to look into an abyss of our own making.

Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
Andrew Sarris
New York Observer
Top Critic
October 24, 2007

I may be clearly in the minority on this movie. It will almost certainly be number one on my list of movies that other people liked and I didn't.

Stephanie Zacharek
Salon.com
Top Critic
October 5, 2007

Feels less like a breathing, thinking movie than an exercise. That may be partly because it's an adaptation of a book by a contemporary author who's usually spoken of in hushed, respectful, hat-in-hand tones.

Elizabeth Weitzman
New York Daily News
Top Critic
October 5, 2007

The most searing film I've seen this year.

Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
Rick Groen
Globe and Mail
Top Critic
September 6, 2007

Written almost exclusively in taut dialogue, the book already reads like a screenplay, and the Coen brothers have taken full advantage.

Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
Joshua Rothkopf
Time Out New York
Top Critic
June 2, 2007

Like a pair of owlish mind readers, the Coen brothers have somehow done exactly the right thing to repuff their sagging artistic momentum.

Full Review | Original Score: 5/5
Scott Foundas
Village Voice
Top Critic
May 31, 2007

A stark modern-day Western featuring Javier Bardem as the creepiest movie psycho this side of Anthony Hopkins in The Silence of the Lambs.

Andrew O'Hehir
Salon.com
Top Critic
May 24, 2007

The most ambitious and impressive Coen film in at least a decade, featuring the flat, sun-blasted landscapes of west Texas and an eerily memorable performance by Javier Bardem.

Richard Corliss
TIME Magazine
Top Critic
May 24, 2007

No Country delivers, with suspense scenes as taut as they are acutely observed.

Ray Bennett
Hollywood Reporter
Top Critic
May 19, 2007

The Coens' typically superior filmmaking sustains the electrifying mood for most of the picture, but they are undone by being too faithful to the source novel by Cormac McCarthy.

Todd McCarthy
Variety
Top Critic
May 19, 2007

A scorching blast of tense genre filmmaking shot through with rich veins of melancholy, down-home philosophy and dark, dark humor.