A Serious Man Reviews
An interesting movie that kept me quite entertained at times. Some quiet laughs. The ending seemed confusing at first and I had to go back and watch it again to make sure I saw what I thought I saw. The movie does not end well for Larry Gopnik I'm afraid. Finally giving into the bribe that was offered him seems to result in his demise. Immediately after he changes the "F" to a "C-", his Doctor calls requesting a visit and a tornado lands near his son/home.
The story is about a Midwestern physics teacher, watches his life unravel over multiple sudden incidents. Though seeking meaning and answers amidst his turmoils, he seems to keep sinking.
'A Serious Man' has to be the Coen Brothers most unappreciated movie when it comes to naming the Coen Brothers best movies, and yes there's plenty of outstanding movies from them, but lets not overlook movies such as this. The Coen Brothers have yet to disappoint me, even through I haven't seen every movie from them, but the ones I have watched I've given glowing reviews and so is this one, because 'A Serious Man' is a superb and wonderful piece of film making that I can't believe it took me this long to watch it.
The Coens are masters of film making and there's no point of me pointing that out for you, since you can watch one of they movies (expect for The Ladykillers) and see the brilliance in the dialogue scenes and the reverse shots by them keeping the shots simple but precise enough to keep you engaged. And in this movie, the Coens did just that and that's take a simple man like Larry Gopnik (Michael Stuhlbarg) and put him in an endless cycle of torment, for serious or comedic effect. That's what I was so amazed by from start till finish, not because of the writing or the cinematography (which are perfect by the way), but that I easily related to the main characters struggle and the dying questions about his own religion and he's life. Many times in the movie Larry tries to seek help and answers, but gets shut out or doesn't get satisfying answers. This hit home for me as I know what that's like. Bravo Coens.
Michael Stuhlbarg was absolutely fantastic in this movie and it's honestly one of he's best performance of his career (In my opinion). Stuhlbarg really dose bring a lot of emotion, depth and the human side to this character that we can easily simplify with. His reactions to hellish situations was spot on and realistic. It's hard to believe that he didn't get at least an Oscar nomination for this and just the thought of it is really hard to digest. Brilliantly performance Michael Stuhlbarg.
Roger Deakins is one of the best cinematography's working today and it wasn't surprising that the best part of this movie was the cinematography, as it was flawless. Most of the time the camera is right close up to the characters and it has a wide lens to it so you would feel a sense of presence of being right there with somebody. It really dose add a lot to the scenes in this movie, I mean it made some scenes of the movie uncomfortable or kind of funny. That's the work of Roger Deakins everyone and it's glorious.
I'm not going to spoil the ending to this movie, because I hate when people do that in reviews without any warnings, but let me tell you that the ending is such a gut-punch and will leave you completely speechless.
Now for the problems: ...
Overall 'A Serious Man' is an outstanding movie with brilliant performances from everyone and top notch writing from the Coens. If haven't seen this movie yet, then do yourself a favor and watch it.
JDT: 3/5. He wasn't a serious man.