In this learning community, History of Motion Pictures will study some of the most important films in history, closely examining classics like Citizen Kane and Casablanca and even international films like Seven Samurai and Amores Perros. Meanwhile, Freshman Composition I will supplement this class with readings to help you better understand and appreciate the films.
Tuesday, September 6, 2011
"You Don't Have To Do This."
That's a line that every soon-to-be victim says to their murderer right before the final crack of thunder is made and their life ends.
The line used three times in the movie "No Country for Old Men." The merciless killer, Anton Chigurh, is portrayed by the intense actor Javier Bardem. His style is a polite yet sadistic man whose signature weapons are a captive bolt pistol and a silenced semi automatic shotgun. Another trademark note on the killer is his coin toss gamble with certain victims. Although he does leave one man alive with his coin toss game. Kind of like this guy.
"Don't put that coin in your pocket..."
I'm kind of wanting to focus on Chigurh in this summary because he is a fascinating character. In an absurd way, I have always been intrigued with histories of serial killers. What their mind set is and why they carry the motives they have. Chigurh is interesting and bizarre enough that he is almost similar to many killers in famous history.
Chigurh is hired as a hit-man to relocate the money stolen from a mexican drug deal gone awry. Plans don't go accordingly for the men who hired Chigurh as they are killed early on in their deal. Chigurh sets out killing "inconveniences" while on the hunt for the stolen two million. The unfortunate sucker to stumble upon the money is retired Vietnam veteran Llewelyn Moss who was just out for a little hunt.
"We got money, Ma!"
The chase begins when Llewelyn flees with the money and sends his near trailer trash wife off to her mothers.
Chigurh is able to track Llewelyn as readily as the group of angry mexicans who want their money. Also on the chase are sheriff Ed Tom Bell and bounty hunter Carson Wells.
Chigurh has an encounter once with our supposed (kickass) protagonist in the awesome hotel that is actually here in town. Both men escape with mere flesh wounds and scurry off in their own directions.
"Give me that money, bro!"
Llewelyn is made with the ultimatum by Chigurh that he gives him the money or his wife dies. He makes a plan to find his wife and send her out of the country with the money so that no one can hurt her. Sadly, in the midst of meeting her, Llewelyn gets distracted by some hussy with beer. The angry mexicans arrive just as our hero is getting a little smiley and shoot the lights out of him.
Sheriff Ed Tom strolls up seconds after the shoot out, only to find Llewelyn's boney ass dead. This part both infuriated and excited me. I liked how our hero dies unexpectedly yet it still flows for the rest of the story since he wasn't our only main character.
With her husband and mother (stupid old woman) dead, Carla Jean returns home to find Chigurh sitting in her old bedroom. Surely enough, he came as he promised Llewelyn. Although her husband was killed by banditos, our sophisticated killer carries out with the ultimatum.
We see Carla Jean in a defensive and not so naive manner as she confronts the Chigurh. She has nothing else to lose except for her life.
Chigurh leaves the house and drives off casually. He crosses a stop sign (in front of the house I live at here in town *win*) and is T-boned by an on coming vehicle. He escapes the scene with a nasty (I MEAN NASTY) looking arm injury. Never to be seen again.
Ed Tom is now retired and is having breakfast with his woman. He tells her of two dreams he had in the night. The dreams are almost complete analogies to the story of the movie. He reflects saying that he travels into a snowy mountain (his life and being a sherif) and at the top of the mountain waits his father (the killer who waits for him at the end of the chase). Instead of staking out after Chigurh in a fatal battle, Ed Tom chooses a different path and retires.
That's what he imagined.
The movie ends with the end of Ed Tom's tale to his wife. I know some didn't like this film's ending but I thought it was excellent. The Coen Brother's adaption of the book of almost identical but amazing none the less.