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True Grit

By herd commander
Sun, 23 Jan 2011, 12:07

I am just glad we watched both Superman and Batman and True Grit on DXM. Movies acquire a kind of "depth" and "meaning"... and that "felt experience", with DXM─"sacred-ness"; without which would have otherwise felt like just merely passing time.

But that does not mean these films won't stand out without the aid of such enhancers. The mark of a truly great film is that it cuts across boundaries, whether in normal or special types of awareness.

Movies exhibiting some grit, genuinely felt (lol):

In this film, we see how the Law of the Land may be executed by the parties concerned, and how it is met with force and resistance.

We can also see a filmic tradition that amounts to notable results (repeat partnerships) in the guise of actor Josh Brolin and directors the Coen brothers. Much like what we see with Michael Caine, Christian Bale, and director Christopher Nolan; or with Johnny Depp, Helena Bonham Carter, and director Tim Burton; or Hugo Weaving and the Wachowskis; or Russel Crowe and Ridley Scott─all of which achieve archival notoriety.


Lastly, we see a young actress in character and wearing the mantle of "true grit", placing the stereotypical alpha male suit(s) in the periphery as (merely?) guardians of fair justice.

If your sons, or daughters, are confused tweens, or budding, fashionable metrosexuals, or (caution: grit ON) fatherless emos, then this film might just set them, or you, right on track.



By Sting Lacson

Practically snubbed at the Golden Globes (no nominations in any category), I hope this gets the respect it deserves at the Oscars. The Coen Brothers are really talented filmmakers, both on camera and on paper. Their storytelling is simple, concise, and does not rely on computer-generated images. They are old school filmmakers telling old school stories, but with depth and clarity. None of that fancy non-linear stuff like Christopher Nolan, who also failed to woo the Hollywood Foreign Press Association.

Anyway, I could go on praising every aspect of this film, from cinematography to production design, but that would be boring. As boring as this film's attempt at discussing legal concepts and legal procedures. (I'm pretty sure this film will become required viewing in law school classes.) So instead, let's analyze the title. I love analyzing titles.

So...why "True Grit"? First of all, it was directly mentioned in the movie. You don't always have that, you know, mentioning the film's title in the film itself. Have you heard the words "Star Wars" mentioned anywhere in the entire Star Wars saga? Exactly.

The film's title was mentioned by the girl Mattie Ross (played by Heilee Steinfeld) the first time she speaks to U.S. Marshall Rooster Cogburn (played by Jeff Bridges). These are her exact lines:

"Mr. Cogburn? I'd like to talk to you a minute. They tell me you're a man with true grit."

So "true grit" refers to something in one's character. But it actually takes more than an eye patch and a drawn gun to have true grit. Although I must admit, the eye patch does seem to increase Jeff Bridge's grit.

"Damn right."

But did Jeff Bridges monopolize all the grit in the movie? Nope. All the other characters who drew their guns also showed grit. Like Barry Pepper.

"I'm glad the Coens gave me facial hair in this movie. Being clean-shaven makes me look soft."

And Matt Damon, whose bad-ass spurs added even more grit.

"And I've got a bad-ass rifle."

Hell, it may even be the great Josh Brolin who showed the most grit in this movie. He never even drew a gun throughout the entire film. Ever. And he died in a totally bad-ass manner; that is, with a shotgun through the chest.

The look of true grit.

But in my opinion, the title actually refers to the girl Mattie Ross. It is her doggedness that propels the story forward, without which there would be no plot in the first place. Also, I have never known what a "handsome girl" looked like, until I've seen Heilee Steinfeld. Don't get me wrong. She's a great actor. And she's also handsome.

"Take me to the prom!"

Her true grit cost her an arm, but that didn't stop her from growing to a ripe old age. She never married, though. Maybe handsome girls become old maids. And I also couldn't help but remember that James Franco also lost an arm in 127 Hours. What is it with amputated arms and 2010 movies?

*some info from IMDb
pics from VLC

True Grit. USA. 2010.

Rating: Eight and a half out of ten.


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