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True Grit


A new Coen brothers movie is, to say the least, always an anticipated movie. With brilliant movies like The Big Lebowski, Fargo, The Man Who Wasn’t There, No Country For Old Men and Burn After Reading (i still have to see A Serious Man) they seem to raise their own bar with every movie they make. True Grit is a re-make from the 1969 movie with the same name which was based on Charles Portis’ novel.

True Grit is the story of a 14 year old girl, very well played by Hailee Steinfeld, whose father was killed by a man called Tom Chaney. She convinces US Marshall Rooster Cogburn (Jeff Bridges) to go after him. Against his wish she accompanies him and Texas Ranger LaBoeuf (played by Matt Damon).


I have never read the novel, nor have i seen the 1969 movie which featured iconic actor John Wayne, so i went in all blank. Although being a fan of western movies i was expecting something good. And something good i got.

The atmosphere, settings, clothing did give me the feeling i was watching an old western movie. Hailee Steinfeld played a remarkable role, especially realizing she’s only 14 years old. Usually the type of character she plays (a wise, strong willed girl) annoys me (just like Becca from Californication annoys me) but she pulls it off extremely well. Matt Damon, playing Texas Ranger LeBoeuf, was unrecognizable, in a good way. Both because of the way he looked, but also because of his acting. I think this was the first time in a long while i didn’t have to think about Team America when seeing him. But the star of the movie in my opinion was Jeff Bridges, playing the old, grumpy, thick accented, drunk, lazy but skilled and dedicated lawman Rooster Cogburn.

True Grit is an excellent mix between adventure, action and humor without making it too boring, violent or funny. The only downside for me was the lack of time the bad guys, Josh Brolin (as Chaney) and Barry Pepper (as Lucky Ned Pepper) got. That would have made the movie even better. Especially Lucky Ned Pepper was impressive in the few minutes he got in the movie.

The comments i read about this movie say that it’s not the typical Coen brothers movie, which is somewhat true, but also somewhat false. The odd characters that seem to pop up randomly, the violence and especially the dialogues in this movie have in my opinion a typical Coen brother trademark. The story is a bit more straight forward, but that’s to be expected since it was based on an old novel and not at all a bad thing.

Go see it if you get the chance. And definitely go see it if you like western movies.



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