Inside Llewyn Davis ★★★★½

Another spectacular outing from the Coen Brothers. In what can be seen in some ways as a companion piece to "A Serious Man" due to its setting and increasingly personal narrative, "Inside Llewyn Davis" is a wonderfully crafted piece.

The entire ensemble deserves praise with everyone being there to create the setting and move the narrative. Oscar Isaac gives a phenomenal performance and truly has a spectacular voice for folk music. Likewise Justin Timberlake should actually switch genres because he works so well with the songs he performs here. John Goodman too, while briefer than I'd like to have seen, gives a wonderfully amusing performance as an aging jazz singer whose health is failing him (showing a sort of cultural decline in the genre by the time our period is placed).

While I could go on about how beautiful the bloom lighting pops the cinematography forward or how the editing flows the story together I'd really like to praise the film for how it presents the early 60s. In all outings the 60s are depicted as a time of revolutionary change. While this is justified certainly it is not how people perceived their times whilst living in it. The Coens have shown us a snapshot into the past through its deeply emotional tale of a struggling folk singer. We get a clear picture of a time through a story with nothing shoved down our throats.

Joe liked these reviews