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Movie Review: Crazy Heart December 17, 2009

Posted by judylobo in Movie Reviews, Movie Trailer.
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Movie Review: Crazy Heart

Alternate Title: The Dude Goes Country

Story: I did not want this movie to end. Now how often have you heard me say that before? This fine piece of celluloid delight was directed and written by first time director Scott Cooper and based on the novel by Thomas Cobb.

Bad Blake is a 57 year old washed-up, boozed up, has been of a country western singer/songwriter is now relegated to playing in bowling alleys and small blue highway bars. He is broke, an alcoholic and has no future to look towards. Four time married Blake meets a much younger woman and the love bug strikes him again. Will he change? Can he change? Will he ever be able to write those great songs again?

You think that you have seen this story before but it is handled with the touch of a director who possesses an artist’s eye. Just when you think the film is going to a place that is film weary, it takes a slow turn to somewhere else. Little surprises, authentic detail, slow camera shots, a fine script, wonderful music and outstanding acting make this a must see film.

The film is unforced, easy on the eye, ear and intimate. I will also always root for a film that has the possibility of redemption as one of its themes.

Watch the trailer here:

Acting: Four time Academy Award nominee Jeff Bridges as Bad Blake was sensational. Bridges is so comfortable i his own skin that he brings tears to one’s eyes. If he does not walk away with his Oscar this year I will be very pissed. Maggie Gyllenhaal as Jean Craddock was lovely. She has a willowy, grace that fills the screen. Robert Duvall as Wayne, brings home the bacon in a small, pivotal role. Colin Farrell as Tommy Sweet was not over the top as he tends to be at times and he, like Bridges, did his own singing.

Trivia: Jeff Bridges’ performance as Jeffrey “The Dude” Lebowski in The Big Lebowski (1998) is ranked #90 on Premiere Magazine’s 100 Greatest Performances of All Time (2006) and is ranked #55 on Premiere Magazine’s 100 Greatest Movie Characters of All Time. He is well known for his liberal political views. He is good friends with Nick Nolte and Gary Busey. Maggie Gyllenhaal is the older sister of Jake Gyllenhaal. Her mother is a Golden Globe-winning, Oscar-nominated scriptwriter. Her father is an Emmy-nominated director, her grandmother is a doctor and Eric Foner, her mother’s first husband, is an acclaimed historian at Columbia, the college she attended. She is of Swedish (noble) and Russian-Jewish descent.

Predilection: I like Jeff Bridges.

Critters: Lots of fish in a a scene in the Houston Aquarium.

Food: Biscuits.

Soundtrack: Wonderful music by Stephen Bruton and T Bone Burnett . Jeff Bridges and Colin Farrell do their own singing.

Opening Titles: Other than the title all credits are at the end.

Visual Art: Masterful landscapes of the southwest.

Theater Audience: Opening day saw a large crowd of admiring dudes and dudetttes.

Weather: Sunny

Sappy Factor: 0

Quirky Meter: 0

Squirm Scale: 0

Drift Factor: I did not drift for a second.

Predictability Level: Moderate.

Tissue Usage: 0

Oscar Worthy: Oh my YES

Big Screen or Rental: Big screen for sure. Jeff Bridges is one of my all time favorites. Here are some of my favorite films of his and some of the awards he has been nominated for in the past: The Last Picture Show — Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor, The Last American Hero, Thunderbolt and Lightfoot — Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor, Cutter’s Way, Against All Odds, Starman – Nominated — Academy Award for Best Actor and Nominated — Golden Globe Award for Best Actor, Jagged Edge, Tucker: The Man and His Dream, See You in the Morning, The Fabulous Baker Boys, The Fisher King, American Heart, The Big Lebowski, Arlington Road, The Contender – Nominated — Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor and Nominated — Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor, Seabiscuit, The Door in the Floor, Crazy Heart, Alliance of Women Film Journalists Eda Award for Best Actor, Los Angeles Film Critics Association Award for Best Actor, Nominated — Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Motion Picture Drama, Nominated — Chicago Film Critics Association Award for Best Actor, Nominated — Broadcast Film Critics Association Award for Best Actor, Nominated — Independent Spirit Award for Best Male Lead, Nominated — Satellite Award for Best Actor – Motion Picture Drama, Nominated — St Louis Gateway Film Critics Association Award for Best Actor

Length: Under two hours

LOBO HOWLS: 9.25

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Comments»

1. Lobo’s Howls & Growls – Best & Worst Films of 2009 « Lobo’s Rants - December 29, 2009

[…] Films of 2009 – Lobo Howls – 1. Crazy Heart (9.25 Howls) 2. A Serious Man (9 Howls) 3. An Education (9 Howls) 4. Bliss (9 Howls) 5. Bright Star […]

2. Ribs - February 21, 2010

#1 Movie of the Year? Wow! I would have to choose Inglorious Basterds.
http://ribsramblings.wordpress.com/2010/02/21/ribs-reviews-crazy-heart-2/

3. CMrok93 - April 16, 2011

Great review. The film is a little too run-of-the-mill if not for Jeff Bridges brilliant portrayal and you are on the money wondering why Maggie’s Gyllenhaal character would even be interested in Bad Blake. The moment she started kissing him, I was like Whaaat? why did she do that? It came out of nowhere. Check out my review when you can please!


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