O Brother Where Art Thou film review

18 Sep

Picture from the film O brother where art thou

A myth brought to life by the Coen Brothers – listen then buy it

audio transcript

Once I’ve said ‘Go and see it!’ what’s left for me to say in a film review? The overwhelming impression that comes from the Coen brothers’ creation is a warmth and richness. Partly this is visual; the landscape of the deep South shot in yellow tones, the detail of the invention in every scene. It’s partly emotional; the likeability of the three main characters and a shared journey. But also the atmosphere created in the music and in the accents allows you to sink fully into the imaginary world. [Baptism – music and speech] The plot in this film isn’t really the point, so I won’t spoil it for you. But as befits a story based on Homer’s ‘Odyssey’, it’s fairly episodic but keeps it’s direction. And as for the feelgood factor, you’re never really in doubt that there will be a happy ending. In some ways the film is like a live action cartoon. The characters are all larger than life and there’s no shying away from corny old jokes or visual humour. And you guessed it, I love that stuff. Every actor in this film plays brilliantly and some of them sing brilliantly. It’s clear that this film, in featuring what they call ‘old-timey music’ gives it and ‘old-timey’ charm. [Music] But don’t think that this makes it a simple or trivial film. Be amazed that Hollywood can make something with this amount of craftsmanship, wit and perceptiveness purely in the name of entertainment. Then wonder why it’s such a rarity. How often do we leave the cinema having watched a major release saying ‘What a great film!’. Not often enough and so, go and see it…….


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