Oh wow you motley lot. I’m bloody excited about this weeks Two and a Half Glass review!
Though I have a confession – last week I went to see 12 Years a Slave, and well, I haven’t mustered up the energy to write that one yet…
TWO AND A HALF GLASS REVIEW:
INSIDE LLEWYN DAVIS
This weeks review is Inside Llewyn Davis…I just saw it…and I don’t want to get to the crux of the review too soon, but I’m worried you won’t read to the end of this and not get my advice…which is this: this film was fucking lovely and wonderful and brilliant…I loved it and am really having some very deep and profound feelings of happy right now.
I SUPPOSE I am biased. There is a lot in this film for me to love. It contains all of my loves. Well not my dog, or milkshakes, or plastic dinosaurs…but a lot of them:
It has New York! I love New York!
It has folk music! I love the folk music.
It’s by the Cohen Brothers! I love the Cohen brothers.
I love the late 50’s / early 60’s beatnik Greenwich village thing! I love that shit!
It has a guy with a beard! I love guys with beards!
It even had a bit of a great American Road trip, which, well, yeah you get the picture…
What wasn’t here for me to love? This is my schtick…I knew I would like it, but just not THIS much (enthusiastically splays arms to show how much).
So – picture the cover of the Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan – actually you don’t need to – I’ll post it for you here:
Now imagine this photo and these songs made into a film. The film has a tobacco brown stain to it, the colours are muted, the light is grey. It’s understated and beautiful.
That’s what this was.
LLewyn Davis is a folk singer in New York in 1961, just trying to get a break (man). He used to be part of a folk duo who were moderately well known, but his partner jumped off the George Washington Bridge and now Llewyn is off by himself a bit sad and lonely living the penniless artist dream – couch surfing and being a bit of a dick to everyone.
ARGH there was so much good stuff, my head is bursting. I WANT TO BE LIVING IN THIS FILM, y’know?
Okay, lets get down to bullet points before I continue going berserk on the ol’ CAPS LOCK screaming:
- What a great cast! Oscar Isaac, Carey Mulligan, John Goodman, Justin Timberlake (hey, I thought he was good).
- The guys from Girls are really getting good roles right now. Adam was in it, he was fantastic in his small role, and I love that he’s cropping up in so many cool films. Oh! And also for the Girls fans, Ray was in it for a tiny bit too. I love Ray.
- The main song “Fare Thee Well (Dink’s song) is cussing gorgeous.
- New York – OH NEW YORK – *sigh* my long lost love…everything about how New York is depicted here kills me – early 1960′s, winter, Greenwich Village, the Gaslight Cafe, even the subway – is cold and grey and slushy and grimy, and fucking beautiful. It reminded me so much of my short visit last year – the apartments, the alleys, the subway, even down to the narrow, steep and wonky stairwell leading up to my apartment. I loved the grime, the litter the torn pasted posters on the lampposts.
- CATS! Cute cute ginger cats!
I saw this with my brother, who I think loved this as much as I did, though my brother is pretty much the male clone of me in terms of taste in these things…
I left feeling happy and hugged from inside – but it’s not cheesy. It’s not actually a happy film. Not at all. Yet it left me feeling very um..whats another word for happy…joyful? Urgh, no not joyful. Whatever…you know what I mean. Yeah, it’s sweet and funny but it’s not a comedy. It’s a pretty dark story, dealing with flawed characters. Llewyn Davis is a fuck up who pisses off pretty much everyone he comes across. But still *SWOON*.
My brother compared it to the Royal Tenenbaums in terms of tone – they’re both nice, sweet, films, but they’re not happy, and they’re about screwed up protagonists and without neatly packaged Hollywood endings. Their quirky and easy to watch – yeah, as you can guess it’s not massive on plot – the films I like seldom are, it’s about a time, a place and the people.
Also, as much I like the Cohen Brothers, I often find their stuff a little hard to get into – a bit cold – not this one. And you know what? I’m even gonna say I wish it was a little longer. It went FAST!
Oh and I know what you’re thinking – he’s not playing a young Bob Dylan. This isn’t a rip off of the Bob Dylan story…trust me…you’ll see.
I just think I’m going to stop talking now and tell you to GO SEE IT.
(though if you do go see it based on this, and hate it, which I realise you may, please don’t get angry with me…I’m feeling a wee bit of pressure here…)
Plus I need to go and listen to some early Bob Dylan and unpack my Uke now. I’m inspired, y’all! I’m gonna run away and write folk music and be a beat poet and make out with boys with beards and guitars.
See, THAT is why we read, watch and listen to things – TO GET INSPIRED!
(plus I’m probably going to get a bit sad and heartbroken about missing New York by the time I finish this glass, so it’s best you don’t linger, child)
I just want to go and see this again…like, now.
FIVE GLASSES OF PINOT NOIR! (is that a bottle? yeah! Let’s say it gets a WHOLE BOTTLE…and thats a bottle of good stuff, we’re talking a nice “pay day” pinot, as in something over $20 from New World).
And, yeah, totally best film I’ve seen so far this year (see ranking below)…and yet it’s the only one I’ve seen that’s not nominated for Best Picture. Huh, go figure.
SHOULD YOU GO SEE IT?
YES! YES! A THOUSAND TIMES YES! (silly)