Dec 13, 2008

Burn After Reading


The Coen brothers are the quirky and film noir savvy brothers that are known for their original black comedies. Their most recent release Burn After Reading finds the two brothers once again dealing with similar themes found in their other films. I felt that Burn After Reading was made around the idea of having smiling Brad Pitt's brain blown out. Underneath the Coen brother’s niche for unsettling humor lies a certain contempt towards certain individuals. The humor added to the Coen Brother’s films merely acts as an excuse for the brother filmmakers to not feel bad about their cinematically channeled hatred.


While watching Burn After Reading I couldn’t help but think that the character Osbourne Cox, played by John Malkovich, was modeled after the arrogant character traits of the Coen brothers. Malkovich, an actor I have always hated, plays a weasel-like and arrogant narcissist that is not too pleasant to look at. The character of Osbourne Cox is the sort of individual that reminds me a deranged yapping Chihuahua that seems to ignore the confused people looking at it. The question is; who really deserved a bullet in the skull? A yapping Cox or a retarded Brad Pitt?


Once again, Joel Coen casted his manly and unintentionally funny wife, Frances McDormand, in yet another film. McDormand once again proves that she has nothing new to offer in the way of interesting characters. She gave her “best” in Fargo as the tough and ambiguously female police officer. In Fargo, her character has a sort of sexual role reversal with her passive husband. I wouldn’t be surprised if the same situation was present at the Coen household. Just because Frances McDormand wears the pants in the relationship, doesn’t mean that “hubby” Joel should passively accept her demands in starring in his films.

I truly believe that the Coen brothers pretty much made the same film their entire career. Their greatest achievement is the almost masterpiece Barton Fink. Burn After Reading should be burned after watching. But I say this with respect to the brothers Coen’s finer achievements of yesteryear.No Country For Old Men showed that the Coens might have a little spark left in their now banal minds, but it’s doubtful. Over a decade of disappointments is hard to burn out of your mind.


-Ty E

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

You're not paying attention. It's really a film that points out how women are and always will be opportunists who will do anything to reach their self involved goals all the while oblivious to who actually cares for them . Count the deaths related to a silly want for plastic surgery. But hey I'm stupid too ... now with my second wife who is just as crazy as the first.

jervaise brooke hamster said...

all the coen brothers films are ludicrously over-rated unwatchable hogwash, i`ve always genuinly believed that ever since their ludicrously over-rated unwatchable hogwash started to pollute our screens back in the 80`s. I must admit i`ve always had a thing for frances mcdormand, i know she`s getting on a bit now but i`d still like to bugger her, and i agree about john malkovich being a load of old rubbish, strickly speaking the only good thing about him is that he isn`t british.

Danie McCafferty said...

This movie made me sad because it was like a painting by a kindergartener; they tried their very best, but it was still terrible. It reminded me of the independent films made by college kids at the last minute to get a (barely) passing grade.

That and the fact that they tried to market it as a comedy made it an absolute boner for me. If it had had a single redeeming quality, it might have been forgivable. But it didn't.