Posted on 12/22/10 05:50 PM
I love Westerns. There's always been something about them that draws me in. I also am a huge fan of the Coen Brothers and Jeff Bridges. So you can imagine my excitement when I first heard about this film almost a year ago. It was well worth the wait. What a film. The original with John Wayne is good, but this is one of those very rare times where the remake is better than the original. The Coens' make this film their own. They have yet to disappoint me (I am one of the few that actually liked Burn After Reading). They are two of the best directors out there along with Scorsese, Eastwood and even Christopher Nolan.
Now about the cast. Absolutely solid. Every performance, major or minor, is just superb. Jeff Bridges is just as great as the Duke himself, as Rooster Cogburn. He is one of my favorite actors of all time. He fits the role so perfectly. Matt Damon and Josh Brolin also deliver fine performances, but it's Hailee Steinfeld, in her debut performance as Mattie Ross, who is the true star of this film. She nails every scene she's in. It didn't take long for me to realize, that this was perfect casting. She deserves an Oscar, if not, a nod. This is very much her film.
The cinematography is beautiful, the score is excellent, just an overall great film. The action isn't overdone at all, which I really liked a lot, especially since so many films do that these days. I'm looking at you Michael Bay. This is definitely a film about the characters. And that is the way it should be. This is the best Western since Unforgiven and one of the best films of the year.