The Ballad of Buster Scruggs
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All Critics (28)
| Top Critics (8)
| Fresh (26)
| Rotten (2)
| DVD (2)
Anjelica Huston is effective as a woman mourning a love lost.
There's also a rather awesome and unpretentious directness as well as calmness about the way that Huston contemplates his own rapidly approaching death.
A well-crafted miniature, this dramatization of the Joyce story directly addresses the theme of how the 'shades' from 'that other world' can still live in those who still walk the earth.
A beguiling chamber piece.
That Huston should have dared search for the story's cinema life is astonishing. That he should have found it with such seeming ease is the mark of a master.
Huston was an old man when he died, but he had not withered dismally with age because he still had the courage and the imagination to attempt to make an impossible film of the greatest story that he had ever read.
Huston's film is not flawless, but even its flaws are generous. The entire film is suffused with a sense of values vulnerable but not yet gone, of eloquence not yet disabled by irony.
The film is a masterpiece, both a worthy translation of James Joyce's story and a wonderful summation of John Huston's career.
A personal film for John Huston, starring daughter Anjelica and adapted to the screen by son Tony, this very last work evokes beautifully the mood and texture of James Joyce's lyrical story.
... a small masterpiece, a film of exquisite grace and understated power.
a finely polished jewel and a wonderful way to remember a great director.
What redeems Huston's last gasp is the observational framing and agile editing with which the Morkan sisters' soiree is captured.
Irish bourgeois gather for the Feast of the Epiphany in this adaptation of James Joyce's story.
When I read Joyce's story in Dubliners, I thought that it was unfilmable. The conflict exists in the passage of time, the inability to really know another, and the inevitability of death -- all themes that can be conveyed but with the subtlety inherent in Joyce's writing. And when I finished John Huston's adaptation of the story, my opinions haven't changed. What emerges in Huston's work is a work of too much subtlety, and I doubt that I would understand the story's point had I not read Joyce's original work. In fact, I think the film is a good "visual Cliff's Notes" of the story.
The performances by Anjelica Huston and Donal McCann are both quite strong. I've never seen Huston as vulnerable as she is in the final scene, and her performance gives the film the grace and emotional power it needs.
Overall, this is not a bad film; it's just a good attempt at the impossible.
It carries a whole universe of emotions.
This is a boring watch. However, it is important to keep in mind that it's intentional. The story is supposed to be awkward, so to the audience, the film will assuredly come across as boring. Still, this was a brilliant adaptation of the famous James Joyce novel. Most of the characters were true to the book with only a few flaws here and there. The tone and setting was spot on, though. Overall, watcheable, but not necessarily the most enjoyable film I have seen.
Disappointing adaptation of the last story in Joyce's Dubliners. It has dullness written all over it. It makes Merchant Ivory seem like Rambo.
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