Thursday, December 30, 2010


I read that the reason the Coen brothers chose to do a remake of TRUE GRIT, the only John Wanye movie he ever won an Oscar for, was because they loved the Charles Porter [woops: Porter, oy, PORTIS! there, finally got it] novel it was based on so much and wanted to be truer to it than the first movie adaptation had been.

But watching this new version, it seemed to me that with the exception of a few scenes and lines of dialogue, the new TRUE GRIT isn't that much different from the first one, except for the acting, and that, for my taste, makes it worthwhile seeing.

Matt Damon proves himself once more to be one of the most versatile movie stars of our times and gives us such a different and more comic Texas ranger from Glenn Campbell in the original, for my taste that alone is worth the price of admission.

And Jeff Bridges, despite his duplicating Wayne's "Rooster Cogburn" almost beat for beat, still surpasses the original in so many ways his performance too makes watching this flick worthwhile. But I can watch anything Bridges or Damon do, their acting is so original and so good.

Hailee Steinfeld is a revelation as the girl, but then so was Kim Darby in the 1969 version. And all the supporting actors are terrific as well, including Josh Brolin, who excels in a smaller role than his recent film success would warrant, but working with the Coen brothers I guess made it worth his while, and ours.

I'm surprised none of them garnered any Golden Globe awards for this flick and will be more surprised if none of them get any Oscar nominations (Bridges and Steinfeld were both nominated for 2011 SAG Awards for their work in this TRUE GRIT).

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