Blood Simple

On the dark, twisted brilliance of the Coen Brothers’ riveting neo-noir debut.

“Gimme a call whenever you wanna cut off my head. I can always crawl around without it.”

Dark as hell. The fact this was a directorial debut ought to make the rest of us mortals feel utterly inadequate. It’s a tautly made neo-noir/thriller, brimming with tension and intrigue, with a dose of pitch black humour. What begins as a fairly simple tale of passion and betrayal quickly spins out of control as the characters get caught in a web of confusion – spun from their own conflicting agendas (and poor communication skills). Sonnenfield’s cinematography is Badlands by day, Blade Runner by night – and always striking. Carter Burwell’s score creeps under your skin. The final ten minutes are impossibly tense – elevated by memorable turns from McDormand & Walsh, and a torturous conclusion that revels in its twisted irony. In the end, we’re left with only one thought:

Has anything ever gone according to plan in a Coen Brothers movie?

4.5 Stars


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