The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford [2007]

Hipster for a Day (Nick Powell)

cinkatzChris is busy with work and such, as well as making awesome images for my site The Cinematic Katzenjammer, so I decided to take over filmhipster for the week. He wanted me to just be a Hipster For a Day but I figured I’d stretch it out a few days because, screw it, I can. I thought of ideas of what I could do, feature wise, and I decided to keep Chris’ review format but give it a theme. Thus, filmhipster is getting Rockwell’d. Yes, you heard it right. A week of movies starring my favorite actor, Sam Rockwell. Shall we begin?

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The Assassination of Jesse JamesWho knew that a western about one of history’s biggest outlaws would also be one of the most beautiful films ever made?

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Film #068 of 2013

The Assassination of Jesse JamesDirector: Andrew Dominik  Cast: Brad Pitt [Jesse], Casey Affleck [Robert] & Sam Rockwell [Charley]

Plot: Robert Ford, who’s idolized Jesse James since childhood, tries hard to join the reforming gang of the Missouri outlaw, but gradually becomes resentful of the bandit leader. Source IMDB.com

100

Hipster Nicks’s Review: The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford (you always have to say the full title) is an absolutely gorgeous film that tells one hell of a story. Part western, part drama, the film is a slow burning character study set to director Andrew Dominik’s mesmerizing camerawork. The movie will haunt you and linger with you, as will Hugh Ross’ narration. While the film is driven powerfully by Pitt and Affleck, the movie also has one hell of a supporting cast with many familiar faces popping up everywhere, all worthy of being a part of the film.

The Assassination of Jesse James

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“You ever count the stars? I can’t ever get the same number, they keep changin’ on me.” Jesse

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Highlights:

  • Brad Pitt’s eyes and haunting glare
  • Casey Affleck stepping out of his brother’s shadow and showing the world he can definitely act
  • The assassination scene
  • The cinematography
  • The Rockwell: Brief, but solid while providing a little bit of comedic relief

Biggest Surprise: The fact a gritty western could look as beautiful as this does, and have a story to match the visuals.

Biggest Let Down: Hardly a problem, but it is 160 minutes long.

Does he get the “bad” guy in the end? It’s in the title, so the build up is even more suspenseful.

Worth a Blu-ray purchase? Hell. Yes. It looks even better on Blu-ray.

Similar to: The Proposition [2005], Red Dead Redemption [Video Game, 2010].

What Tweeters are saying:

https://twitter.com/insequential/status/237497399663271936

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Thank you so much Nick for an outstanding review and being a Hipster today. Nick recently revamped the look & feel of The Cinematic Katzenjammer and switched over to a new server. So make sure you head on over there and re-subscribe so you don’t miss out on any of the latest movie news or reviews.

Posted on March 20, 2013, in 2007, Hipster for a Day and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 64 Comments.

  1. I saw some of this. I have an interest in old west history (prefer Billy the Kid). My main thing is I just couldn’t accept Pitt as Jesse James. While not,a great film but at least Collin Farrell looked a little like James, same for Rob Lowe in the film he did. Might sound stupid, but I just can’t get into it with Pitt as James

  2. Somehow this one evaded me. I still haven’t seen it. A glowing review/score here. You make me want to see it even more now, and I wasn’t that interested in seeing it prior!

  3. I’m ashamed to say that this is a film I still have to see. I’ve heard so many good things about it.

  4. Good review Nick. It’s a beautiful movie that is long, but always entice me no matter where it went with it’s story and vision.

  5. I had to read this from Twitter as this is in my all time top ten. I reviewed it sometime ago and it is an amazing film. Everything you say is spot on and as a nutshell of how good it is for an epic runtime you simply never ever switch off or not feel captivated by it. Grossly underrated.

  6. Another day another 100% on site hipster ;)

  7. Okay…I’m going to have to watch this. Great write up!! :-D

  8. The first time I watched this I actually didn’t finish it because I had no idea what was going on. Last year I finally decided to give it another chance and was blow away by it. Such an amazing looking movie with great performances all around. Nice review.

  9. Great film, but really too long and a few too many lingering artsy fartsy shots. But Casey Affleck is fantastic in this, and really should have won Best Supporting Actor that year.

  10. This is an awesome film.
    I can’t think of many Pitt movies I haven’t enjoyed…maybe a couple..
    Casey Affleck was outstanding in Gone Baby Gone. Have you seen that? It was directed by his brother Ben.

  11. Great review of one of the most under-appreciated, under-seen films of the last few years. It’s stunning to looking at (if you ignore one particularly over-filtered scene), beautifully acted and exactly the right length necessary to tell the story.

  12. Great review. I too was a big Carey fan dating back to his appearances on In Living Color. But I’ve heard this movie is nothing special. That’s a shame because the pieces are there for a funny film.

  13. 100%?! I really should see this soon!

  14. I agree that this movie is excellent but I must question your math. 160 minutes? I don’t think so – I think t’s SIX HOURS LONG!!!! It’s really good but you have to be prepared to spend a LOT of time with it : )

  15. Got this sat at home on Blu-ray. Need to sort it out and watch it, heard some amazing things about it.

  16. This is 160 minutes long?? Hmmm, I’m not a fan of Pitt’s, but I might give it a shot for Casey Affleck.

  17. Great film and collaboration between Pitt and Dominik is something to behold. This film made this years Killing Them Softly a huge let down ;-(

  18. Everything about this film was perfect. Brad Pitt’s best performance in my opinion.
    I will forever love Sam Rockwell!

  19. Great western! My only problem was it’s pace, it was a bit slow. Otherwise, it was brilliant.

  20. Oh that one is one of my all time favorites! Rockwell was fantastic in this one, of my favorite performances of his.

  21. I’m convinced. I like Westerns…LURVE voice-overs (tell me a story, papa!!) and well, that cast. Plus, the Jesse James saga. This movie is clearly a loaded gun!!

  22. This is a superb film. Everyone should see it. Immediately. It doesn’t end where you think it might end as well. It carries on. And then it moves from being a good film to a great film.

  23. Yeah I can’t really add anything that hasn’t been said, except to say Roger Deakins is a genius. I’d just seen him mentioned on another site before coming here, and this is up there with his work for Sam Mendes and the Coen Brothers.

  24. This film often seems to be forgotten when people talk about Westerns and the ‘best films’ they’ve seen which is a shame made even greater by the fact it’s pretty recent too. I loved The Assassination of Jesse James and it may well be one of the finest performances by an acting ensemble I have ever seen – absolutely flawless.

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