True Grit (2010) Available for Home Viewing
There are two excellent reasons to see True Grit: 1) it was directed by Ethan Coen and Joel Coen; and 2) it stars Jeff Bridges. On the surface, True Grit is a standard western—a young girl seeks vengeance for the murder of her father and enlists the aid of a crusty, old U.S. Marshal. With the Coens directing, we expect something that defies convention, and they deliver. As for that young girl…Hailee Steinfeld plays Mattie Ross, giving a remarkable performance (Steinfeld was Academy Award-nominated for True Grit).
While Bridges supplies much of the film’s humor, Steinfeld supplies its purpose and heart. Also starring in True Grit are Matt Damon as Texas Ranger LaBoeuf who is tracking the same man for a different crime and Josh Brolin as that man, the evil-but-not-very-bright Tom Chaney. The screenplay is populated with strange, eccentric, and just plain off-the-wall characters, and capitalizes on the conflicts that arise between them.
The Coens defy convention the way they often do—by inserting irreverent humor and the element of surprise in the film’s darkest moments, and eliciting extraordinary performances from their cast.