Friday, 8 January 2010
The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford 
-->That this movie doesn’t belong to the genre of suspense thrillers is amply clear from its title. Yet, such is the successful culmination of the director’s audacious vision and the beauty of the addictive screenplay, that despite the title also serving as its synopsis, the movie manages to make one watch every frame with bated breath. Courtesy its lazy pacing, elegiac tone and the breathtaking splendour of the vignettes captured on screen, this epic revisionist Western about the assassination of the legendary outlaw by a greasy wannabe manages to be brooding, contemplative and insightful look into violence, brutality, death and man’s obsession with celebrity culture. Mesmerizing in its ability to slowly grow on the viewers (even after the end credits have rolled) and incredibly haunting to look at, the movies has been as generously helped by its splendid recreation of the wild West days that is almost nostalgic in its intonation, as by its talented motley crew of actors. Brad Pitt, as one of the first icons of America, is especially brilliant in his powerful portrayal of an enigmatic man whose mournful exterior masked a psychotic gunman within; Casey Affleck, too, is really good as the queasy and complex young man whose hero worship of Jesse James is gradually replaced with cold jealousy that leads to what the title informed us well in advance.
Director: Andrew Domonik