Joel Coen and Ethan Coen
In the Deep South during the 1930s, three escaped convicts search for hidden treasure while a relentless lawman pursues them.
Having given the world such classics as Fargo (1996), The Big Lebowski (1998), No Country For Old Men (2007), True Grit (2010), and Inside Llewyn Davis (2013), Joel Coen and Ethan Coen managed to firmly solidify their place in cinema history as one of its most notable and creative directing masters. However, as with many other notable directors, a few of their masterpieces seem to have gone by the way side, forgotten by most film lovers. One such film is their magnificent 2000 motion picture, O Brother, Where Art Thou?
The movie is a signature Coen brothers production as it features the perfect fusion of comedy and drama, driven by an energetic script that makes every spoken word exciting. This effortless and mesmerizing piece of cinema is given further power by a trio of outstanding performances provided by George Clooney, John Turturro, and Tim Blake Nelson. Clooney (Everett McGill) gives what is perhaps his finest comedic act in his eclectic career. While Turturro, a mainstay figure in multiple Coen films, continues to prove that he is a fine character actor as he seamlessly inhabits the role of Pete Hogwallop, providing the film with most of its funny and heartfelt scenes. The acting trifecta is completed by Tim Blake Nelson (Delmar O'Donnell) who shows how to depict a mentally-challenged man in a caring, respectful, and loving manner that draws audiences closer to him, not away. There is also the music in O Brother, Where Art Thou?, which is composed by the superb T Bone Burnett (Inside Llewyn Davis), another frequent Coen brothers collaborator, that breathes life into every scene. That is all without forgetting the film's gorgeous cinematography, taken by the legend Roger Deakins (The Shawshank Redemption, Skyfall), that captures the imagination of viewers, easily suspending their belief.
But, it is ultimately Joel Coen and Ethan Coen's distinctive ability to merge all of these elements together that results in a fascinating and unforgettable cinematic adventure that elevates O Brother, Where Art Thou? to greatness, making it a criminally-underrated gem of a film that begs to be visited by everyone.
- George Clooney (as Everett McGill)
- John Turturro (as Pete Hogwallop)
- Tim Blake Nelson (as Delmar O'Donnell)
1 hour and 46 minutes
Comedy / Crime