Monday, September 15, 2008

Burn After Reading: A Wort Report Short

The latest effort from Academy Award-winning writers/directors Joel and Ethan Coen is very good. It’s not great, and I would never rank it with their finer efforts such as Fargo, Raising Arizona, The Big Lebowski or No Country for Old Men, but Burn After Reading is a fun, dark comedy with a tremendous cast.

George Clooney, Frances McDormand, John Malkovich, Tilda Swinton and Brad Pitt each turn in a top-notch performance and they all seem to be having a good time with this labyrinthine pseudo-spy story that—in typical Coens’ fashion—examines a group of not-terribly-bright people who are in way over their heads. By the end of the film’s 96-minute running time, you’ll swear that the story never really went anywhere. But I suppose that’s the point, right? Right?

Burn After Reading Is an entertaining, satisfying and sometimes subversive film, but don’t expect the limitless quotability or rewatchability of The Big Lebowski—which remains the Coens’ strongest comedy.

But hey, that’s just, like, my opinion, man.

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