A Totally Unwarranted and Overly Analytical Movie Review (You’re Welcome):
I saw Inside Llewyn Davis the other night and it was about as uncomfortable an experience as… well, likely what the Cohen’s intended it to be. Firstly, I made the mistake of viewing it in a theatre without captions (sort of “Deaf Rule 101” mishap), and thus may, or may not have filled in parts of the sub-plot that weren’t actually there. My audibly-gifted spouse had the opposing experience (finding the woman behind us coohing to the on-screen cat… mind you, not at… a bit unnerving); not to mention the fact that my parents were our “double date”.
I blame all of my movie buff-ness on my Dad, who secretly trained his kids to appreciate the nuances of such gems as The Magic Christian or Monty Python from the tender age of “But can’t I just watch Doug?” (the cartoon, obviously)… whether we wanted to or not. I can turn almost any conversation towards filmatic trivia, akin to a warped motion-picture GERD. Recently, a nurse made the mistake of mentioning that I looked like an actress and I immediately starting yelping names until it became medical charades, and only I was having fun. (By the way, I’m pretty sure I won. And it was Pfeiffer… not that you asked, but I’m narcissistic enough to tell you anyways.) Yet, despite the involuntary “cinematheque pedigree”, my mother is the complete opposite.
After recently watching August: Osage County with us – which we later psychoanalyzed as a ‘Tennessee Williams-esque drama fest’, akin to the theatricality of yore that is so often missing from the glossy, “anti-incestual” plot points au currant- but she really just wanted something with Katherine Heigl or Rachel McAdams. (Likely falling in love, going back in time or both… with neither of them talking about incest.) Anyways, suffice it to say, my mom was none too pleased with dreary doldrums of Llewyn D, nor the non-redeeming anti-hero with which it starred. For me, I could see the point of the film as a whole (which, if you want the Cliff Notes, is basically that there is no point). It’s as gravely a road as a Bob Dylan song: a palette of pastels, smoke and a singer-songwriter who meets as many mishaps as the professor in Wonder Boys… except little to no respite. I also understood that the orange tabby (perhaps the only creature our antagonizing protagonist has hopes of connecting with) is purely cinematic symbiosis: our ever present hope that he will succeed, he will find affection, he will be heard for who he truly is. But in the end, even when he gave the audience goosebumps with his raw voice [which, to make things extra cool, was recorded live on set instead of in a sound studio] is left unappreciated- as with most things in life… and that’s that.
I couldn’t help but think of my favorite Jimmy Buffet song (I’m a Floridian, so I can say sentences like that), in which he states: “Yes, I am a pirate… 200 years to late.” This turbulent troubedor is not unlike most forgotten talents of an era: suited for a better time, and a different generation. But if there is one compelling aspect of this tale, it’s the soundtrack. Even this afore-mentioned deaf girl wants you to listen to “Fare Thee Well” (featuring Marcus Mumford, which is reason enough) this very second, and report back ASAP. You can also watch this weird gem of a video I found of both boys sining an alternate song (see below), or better yet, go see the movie for yourself… just pop a few Ativan before you go in.
Art Candy To Satiate Your Soul:
Where You Should Go In Your Head Right Now:
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