Monday, November 2, 2009

you're gonna be fine.

The Academy Award Winning Coen brothers' are back.  And their new film, A Serious Man (2009) is absolutely outstanding, certainly one of the best films I have seen all year.  The plot is somewhat difficult to explain, and describing it doesn't really describe the film.  However, I'll give you guys a brief synopsis anyway.  Set in 1967, this dark comedy focusses on Gary Gobnik (Michael Stuhlbarg), a Jewish, midwestern, physics professor who watches his life unravel when his wife prepares to leave him.

The film is witty, smart, and excellently acted.  Most of the cast are rather fresh-faced, including Tony Award nominee Michael Stuhlbarg as Gary, who certainly deserves an Oscar nomination for his role.  The film will more then likely be receiving several other nominations as well, including one for Best Picture.  Exploring questions of faith, family, delinquent behavior, morality, and Judaism, the film not only entertains but also makes you think.

It currently has an 85% on Rotten Tomatoes and has gotten great reviews from many top critics.  Claudia Puig of USA Today called A Serious Man "a wonderfully odd, bleakly comic and thoroughly engrossing film" and Kenneth Turan of the LA Times commented that the Coens have made "their most personal, most intensely Jewish film, a pitch-perfect comedy of despair that, against some odds, turns out to be one of their most universal as well."  I definitely agree with both critics, especially Turan.  It is quite interesting that such a unique, quirky film can also be so universal.

This is truly an excellent film that I highly recommend!


  1. The UK Jewish Film Festival is opening with this film and, as it is not released here yet, I am exceptionally keen to watch it possibly at said festival. Lovely review!

  2. knowingviews - This is a great film to open the festival with. I am sure it will get rave reviews there. You'll have to know if/when you see it and let me know what you think. Thanks for the comment :-)

    Lapo - My feelings exactly :-) Love me some Coens.

  3. Coens are by far my favorite contemporary film makers. Do you know when it goes into wide release in the US? Its not in my crappy central Illinois city yet.

  4. The Coens are two of my favorite contemporary filmmakers as well. Fargo, The Big Lebowski, Oh Brother Where Art Thou? No Country for Old Men, Burn After Reading... and this are all amazing. Really, all of their films have been excellent.

    That is a bummer it hasn't been released in your city yet. I tried to do some investigating online and couldn't really find a wide release date. But on the movie's website ( they list release dates for different cities and it looked like by November 6th it should be playing just about everywhere. I hope that helps!