This offbeat meditation on life, death, and family very much seemed Coenesque, which should be taken as a high compliment. Since this film is my first exposure, I cannot say how it fits in with the rest of his work, or how it ranks with them in terms of quality. Having to judge it on its own terms then, I say it's pretty good. Had I been able to get into it more, or know what to expect, my grade would have robably been higher or lower accrodingly. As it is though, I liked this, but didn't think it was super amazing or anything like that.
The look is wonderful, and the colors and sets just pop. The acting is terrific, and Cruz proves that when she isn't doing American movies, she truly is more than just a beauty to look at. The rest of the cast is also good. I really found the prostitute quite amusing. Tonally this was uneven, but it seemed to work out okay. I liked the quirky sly humor and the irony of things- more stuff that reinded me of Joel and Ethan Coen.
This is entertaining, but you have to be in the right mood to enjoy it. That, and it helps to be open minded about foreign films. So, given that, you should know if you might like this or not.