DirkH’s review published on Letterboxd:
A glorified mess of artificiality, The Counselor is a cerebral Tarantino-esque morality tale. No quickfire snazzy dialogue, but rapid philosophical treaties about fate, destiny and everything in between.
The Counselor juxtaposes medium and intent astoundingly well by creating what is obviously a straightforward crime yarn and ripping from it everything that would encompass that genre, infusing it with distancing artificiality spiraling towards grim reality, all the while highlighting the inevitability of life and ending with pitch black clarity as to what it is about. You don't fuck fate, fate fucks you.
With in your face foreshadowing, dead pan satirization of the banality of life (death, love, sex, take your pick) and disjointing yet rich and deep language, it is not surprising to me that this films gets as much hate as it does. For me, with the fantastic writing of McCarthy lacing every single scene with a kind of awkward alienation, it captivated me from start to finish, giving me the feeling I was watching a bizarre modernization of a lost Shakespeare play. There is discord everywhere in this film and while that perhaps detracts somewhat from the rather disconcerting ending I was still engrossed throughout. Scott probably didn't understand what he was doing here and that actually works for the better as it increases the bizarre dissonance running throughout.
I'm sure McCarthy is out there laughing his ass off at this and I'll gladly join him.