No Country For Old Men is a tough, hypnotizing thriller based on the acclaimed novel of the same title by Pulitzer Prize winning author Cormac McCarthy. Set in 1980s southwest Texas, Academy Award winning filmmakers Joel and Ethan Coen bring a terrifying and gripping adaptation of macho madness to the cinematic world.
Llewelyn Moss (Josh Brolin), an ex-military special forces veteran, finds a pickup truck in the middle of the southwest Texas desert surrounded by dead men. He also finds two million dollars and a large quantity of heroin. Unlike the cattle rustling flicks associated with this genre, No Country is about drug runners. Moss decides keep the goods he finds, but psychopathic assassin Anton Chigurh (Javier Bardem), wearing a strange pageboy haircut and carrying a menacing cattle stun gun for his victims, is hired to retrieve those goods.
Tommy Lee Jones is the aging sheriff Ed Tom Bell, who wants to retire but must find Moss because the shocking carnage leads him in that direction. Meanwhile, there is another bad guy with a sense of humor named Carson Wells (Woody Harrelson) who is also hired as an assassin in the hunt for the goods or Chigurh. These great actors give gritty performances and never upstage each other. Silent dialogue is used quite a bit, because the looks and stares will scare the hell out of you. Usually, when great actors are in the same movie they seldom interact, but in this film these major players thrive in each other's presence.
The story has many twists to the plot, but the main theme is Moss being in the middle of a hunt-and-chase. There is never a dull moment in this movie of anomie. The silent and fantastic landscape was photographed in great style and added a real sense of mystique to an already haunting and meditative adaptation.
There are many players in this film. Kelly MacDonald (Carla Jean Moss), the wife of the elusive Llewelyn Moss, and Tess Harper (Loretta Bell), wife of Sherrif Bell, are the minor characters who give the necessary support to the strong major lead actors in this two-hour masterpiece.
Don't miss No Country For Old Men. It will take you on a graphically violent ride with superb performances.
Directed by: Joel and Ethan Coen
Running time: 122 minutes
Release date: November 9, 2007 (limited)
Genre: Western, Crime, Thriller and Adaptation
MPAA Rating: R