True Grit

2 Oct

By brian

Eye patch, check.  14 year old girl on a mission, check.  Reluctant hero, check.  Movie based on a 1968 western novel, check.  That is about where the similarities will end for the 2010 version of True Grit

The first thing we see, we see with our ears.  The mood of the spot is already set with the eerie singing of children who sound like they grew up in the time of the plague.  Their innocence is gone and, as adults, we know they won’t get it back.  A young girl who’s too small to fit the clothes she puts on, let alone carry out the ‘adventure’ on which she’s about to embark, picks up a gun.  Her father dead, she looks upon his body with steeled eyes confirming what her mind has already made up.  She must find the man who did it and make him pay.  Fatal revenge enacted at the hands of a child is always chilling to consider, and even more so when we see that Joel and Ethan Coen will pull her weeping soul out and dare us to turn away.

John Wayne made the character of “Rooster Cogburn.”  In this version we have Jeff “The Dude” Bridges taking the reins.  When you realize the same actor could play both a pot smoking, Creedence loving bowler with a concern for Feng Shui, and a battle hardened, liquor glutton who’s been kicked in the nuts by life, skepticism sets in.  But I don’t think another actor could take on this role today.  Some would argue that Josh Brolin could, but he lost that chance with Jonah Hex.  Besides, he’s already in the movie and that brings a broad smile to my face.  The Coens like to work with actors.  That seems dumb to say, but I mean aaactors.  They find something in somebody that no one else can see.  Whoda thunk John Goodman could shine after King Ralph?  Whoda thunk Jeff Bridges was more than a B actor after King Kong, TRON, The Fisher King and Blown Away?  I never would have thought Josh Brolin would have a career because he all but disappeared after The Goonies, and didn’t return until his out-of-nowhere rise starting in 2007 with Grindhouse and No Country for Old Men.   The Coens know how to do what no one else thought of – they’re inventors; adventurers in cinema.  That is why everyone will be talking about the young Hailee Steinfeld after this movie.  Oh yeah, and did I mention that Matt Damon’s in it too? 

So, will it suck? 

No….and a, “Hell No!” at that.  Bridges will be better than he’s ever been, which is saying a lot coming off his acclaimed performance in Crazy Heart.  Matt Damon will surprise us until we remember how good he was in Good Will Hunting and The Talented Mr. Ripley.  The Coens will be in the running for an Oscar.  And the eye patch will become what Michael Jackson’s glove was in the 80’s…okay, maybe not, but there’s going to be a lot of “Rooster Cogburn” costumes come Halloween 2011.


5 Responses to “True Grit”


  1. Will It Suck? - November 25, 2010

    […] Bob Thornton as the cop that’s tasked with tracking the amateur hit-man down. We’ll wait for True Grit this Christmas to get our revenge-flick […]


  2. In Theaters This Weekend: Thanksgiving weekend brings four new movies, not much to be thankful for « Will It Suck? - November 25, 2010

    […] Bob Thornton as the cop that’s tasked with tracking the amateur hit-man down. We’ll wait for True Grit this Christmas to get our revenge-flick […]


  3. In Theaters This Weekend: December movie season officially starts with a low roar « Will It Suck? - December 11, 2010

    […] going to be a slow build up to Christmas Day, and the big Christmas weekend releases (TRON: Legacy, True Grit, Gulliver’s Travels, Little Fockers), but for now we’ll just take what we can get, and that’s […]


  4. In Theaters This Weekend: Holiday movie season FINALLY arrives! « Will It Suck? - December 17, 2010

    […] Whew, that’s a lot of movies. At least you know that now the studios are serious about the holiday season. Can’t wait to see what’s next… […]


  5. In Theaters This Weekend: It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas… « Will It Suck? - December 22, 2010

    […] True Grit, the John Wayne classic that made “Rooster Cogburn” a household name, is getting the big-time remake treatment with an early week release this Wednesday, and couldn’t be helmed by a better pair of hands – make that two pairs of hands. The Coen brothers find themselves back in the wild wild West, scene of their last Oscar-binge with No Country for Old Men, and they reteam with old friend Jeff Bridges, fresh off an Oscar win himself, to tackle the revenge tale involving a tomboy, a drunk, and greedy lawman, as they hunt down the same man. With Matt Damon, Josh Brolin, and newcomer Hailee Steinfeld rounding out the cast, every piece of the puzzle is put in place, and all the Coens literally have to do is let the cameras roll to catch all the magic, and just clean it up on the backend. A movie with action, emotion, tenderness, and you can bet some signature Coen weirdness, we can’t think of a better way to spend the holiday weekend. […]


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