A miscellany of weekly ramblings on comics, art and film by Ted Mathot, storyboard artist and writer/artist/self-publisher of graphic novels and comics
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Tuesday, November 20, 2007

The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford (pt.2)

Now that AOJJ has disappeared from local cinemas, it's really started to irk me what a short shrift this film got. It was quikly dispatched from the two screens it was playing on here in Emeryville, and then relegated to the tiny screening room at the Opera Plaza cinema in SF before being shuffled off without even a moment to shine. What an injustice to such a beautiful film.

I was lucky enough to see it in one of its better presentations at the ArcLight in Los Angeles. This film was meant for the big screen. It will be awfully hard to appreciate its beauty and scope on the small screen when it comes to DVD and people finally have a chance to see it.



I got the soundtrack today however and it's fantastic. Nick Cave and Warren Ellis have crafted two of my favorite soundtracks in recent years, for AOJJ and the Proposition. If you have a listen to the soundtrack and haven't seen the film, it's not hard to imagine the imagery that Roger Deakins put up on the screen. Masterful.

Casey Affleck will most likely be overlooked at Oscar time which is too bad as well, he was very very good in the role of Robert Ford, a tragic character that Casey really brought to life.

UPDATE (1/6/08) Regarding my pessimistic and sarcastic remark about awards shows ignoring Casey's performance: much to my delight he is being recognized and just won the National Society of Film Critics award for best supporting actor.
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3 comments:

Matt J said...

After your last post about it I made sure I caught this film on the big screen & iI wasn't disappointed. The pacing is just impeccable. I read a review that criticisized Dominik for lingering TOO LONG on shots but I thought that was entirely the point. This was a year in the editing room & for good reason-the resulting pacing has obviously been fine-tuned to perfection & that it where the extraordinary atmosphere of the picture comes from.
Afflek is indeed on top form -I'm sure he'll get recognition from the Academy.
The American landscape, The 'Great Outdoors' is well represented in cinema this year with AOJJ, 3:10 to Yuma & THERE WILL BE BLOOD.

dany boom said...

based on your recommendation i too saw AOJJ on the big screen and im very pleased i did. walking out, people in front of me said the film was ponderous. i dont agree. stately ? yes. somber ? sure. but not at all ponderous - me i wouldnt have clipped one frame.

i liked the part when pitt was shooting at fish through the ice of the frozen lake.

The American landscape, The 'Great Outdoors' is well represented in cinema this year -

funny, matt, because this film was shot in alberta, canada ! but i agree with you about afflek - i find it hard to believe hell be overlooked this year, between this film and gone baby gone. well heres hoping anyway, because his work as robert ford was one of the best performances i ever saw.

Monkeyfeather said...

Beautiful. A lot of this film was shot around where I grew up.