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A grizzled Western — True Grit

A grizzled Western — True Grit

True Grit - Bridges and Steinfeld

***

Too often films are over-hyped. We all know this problem. Friends go on and on about how The Kings Speech was amazing or the brilliance of Black Swan, and so when you finally get the chance to see the award-winning film, you arrive at the theatre hopes in hand only to think “˜Oh…”™

Review by Lucy Griffin

Well, quite the opposite was the case of True Grit, at least for me.  True Grit is a damn good film.

First and foremost thank you Jeff Bridges. Thank you for sounding like you are chewing marbles. Thank you for swallowing lines so that I cant hear you, yet I smile at what you just said as if it might be the most rousing piece of text yet to be heard.  Thank you for being Jeff Bridges and for making this film just a fraction short of being my favorite film of 2010 (Social Network).

Jeff Bridges saunters around True Grit like a man whose boots have fit since the day he first put them on, while it takes the rest of us years to work “™em in.  It”™s as if Bridges was cowboy-booted as a baby.  And it wasn”™t just Bridges alone that charmed the pants off me, here comes Matt Damon playing a character role like a character!  I mean we could have brilliantly switched in Carol Burnett, his performance full of gestures and nuances each perfected by comic know-how.  Matt Damon as La Boeuf starts out in the film a cocky son of a bitch and ends up, well, a cocky son of a bitch but not without warmth, growth and charisma cached away in his frown lines alone.

True Grit - Bridges

Once again the Coen Brothers work their magic, bringing us movies that are funny and full of characters we wish we knew. Hailee Steinfeld is phenomenal; this young girl can act.  Let”™s see how she does in her next film and hope that True Grit wasn”™t just beginner”™s luck.

Barry Pepper, as usual, manages to make an impression even if only with five lines along with Josh Brolin in a grimy turn as the villain Tom Chaney.

True Grit is chock full of surprisingly complex characters who make you laugh and moments warm enough to make you cry. The stunning sprawling range of land the characters crossed in their cowboy trek reminds us of life during the Wild West, days and nights I”™m happy I never had to face.

There was a certain acceleration in the plot that sort of snuck up on itself and I felt as if something was left out of the story which was my one complaint although this can be common to westerns and the only thing it did was leave me wanting more.  Although it may have taken me a long time to get around to seeing True Grit, it won”™t be long before I want to see it again.

This review was first published on Getacluesy

Pauline Adamek

Pauline Adamek is a Los Angeles-based arts enthusiast with twenty-five years' experience covering International Film Festivals and reviewing new Theatre, Film and Restaurants.

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