You can’t stop what’s coming.
No Country for Old Men (2007) reviewed in part of the JAVIER BARDEM‘s 3-film collection and directed by famed directors and screenwriters Joel and Ethan Coen. The film based on the novel No Country for Old Men (2005) author Cormac McCarthy. “No Country” is a thrilling twist on the noir of the Western film genres, and is a complicated game of cat and mouse, but is one with significant impact. Bardem’s Anton Chigurh may not seem to be a threat initially, but beneath his neat 70s haircut lies sociopathic tendencies and the need to retrieve a large sum of money–at any and all costs.
Brolin’s Llewelyn Moss, a former welder, find a large amount of money while hunting pronghorn. Eventually, he finds himself, unknowingly at first, on the run from Anton Chigurh. While Tommy Lee Jones and Josh Brolin portray notable character roles, however, the featured character is the antagonist Anton Chigurh. Bardem’s Chigurh is a man with his skewed set of morals, perhaps no morals at all. He is in pursuit of two million dollars left over from the scene of an unsuccessful drug deal in the barren lands of West Texas.
Chigurh is a man without a sense of humor. He carries a captive bolt pistol (a device used for stunning cattle) as his weapon of choice. A man who occasionally asks his victims to choose heads or tails in a coin toss to determine their fate. He is without remorse. Nothing is known about his origins or who hired him to retrieve the money, only that when he is given a job, blood and bodies lie behind him. Every scene featuring Chigurh is filled with fear and uncertainty. Why would Moss want to continue to hang onto the satchel full of money–when every moment of his onscreen life is threatened.
No Country for Old Men is a brutal and bloody film with random action scenes–not even animals are spared. The West Texas landscape is cinematic brilliance as a backdrop and gives off a distinctly western feel, and is combined with dark noir tones during the night scenes as Moss skips from one motel to another to evade the creeping terror searching endlessly for him.
The film is a masterful telling of character choice–moral and immoral. Every scene teems with uncertainty. Each scene is executed as a flawless depiction of time and place at a careful, methodical pace. A truly masterful, genre classic.