I wrote at the start of the year as part of a job application. I didn’t get the job, but I feel like it’s a waste to just delete it. And what is a blog if not a perfect place for unwanted writing?
The last piece of content that really moved me was the Coen Brothers film “The Ballad of Buster Scruggs”. The anthology film, which is spilt into six separate stories, runs the gamut from comedic to dramatic, from slow-moving to action packed, from serious to silly. As for any Coen Brothers film, there is no faulting the stunning visuals or the outstanding performances. These guys can certainly make a movie.
The most affecting story is the third, “Meal Ticket”. It concerns a impresario (Liam Neeson, before he apparently turned out to be racist) and his performer, a man with no arms or legs (played by Harry Melling, or, as he was once known, Dudley Dursley). The film is the best emotion – melancholic – and while it highlights the performer’s wonderful dramatic readings of Shakespeare and other famous works, it also feels like a silent film. Short, saddening, and something I’ve thought about every day for weeks.
Personally, Coen Brothers films either leave me cold, or are absolutely outstanding. I am happy to report that “The Ballad of Buster Scruggs” is firmly the latter. My other personal favourite stories were the delightfully absurd “The Ballad of Buster Scruggs” and the heartbreakingly beautiful “The Gal Who Got Rattled”