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Friday, November 09, 2007

Fred Claus, No Country for Old Men 

Fred Claus:

I wonder if at any point during filming Swingers Vince Vaughn thought his career might take him here. “Here” is Fred Claus, a land of candy cane lane sets, green-screened elves, and Paul Giamatti in a fat suit. It’s not a bad “here,” just a curious one; what casting director looked at the guy’s work in Wedding Crashers, Psycho and The Locusts and said “Hey, let’s get this guy to play Santa’s misanthropic brother in our broad family comedy”?

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No Country for Old Men:

The weakest moments in Joel and Ethan Coen’s No Country for Old Men are on display in its trailer. They’re the lines that build up Javier Bardem’s Anton Chigurh into “some kind of ultimate badass,” and I suppose for the purposes of a trailer this is all right. But at feature length, those moments are unnecessary and even intrusive, like the filmmakers waving a flag to get the audience’s attention. They are the few moments where the Coen Brothers forget that cardinal rule of storytelling: Show, don’t tell.

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