The Ron’s review published on Letterboxd:
Seriously can John Goodman just be in everything? I honestly think he could be in a film for one second, and somehow it'd be fucking hilarious. Just seeing his name on the cast list especially in a Coen brothers film makes it must see. Inside Llewyn Davis proves that theory correct once again, and oh did I mention it's a Coen brothers film? It's was all but guaranteed to be good from inception.
Inside Llewyn Davis chronicles a week in the life of struggling folk singer Llewyn Davis (Oscar Isaac). He crashes on a different friends couch almost every night as he navigates the Greenwich Village folk scene in 1961.
Coen Brothers, for most of us that might as well be a stamp guaranteeing quality. These guys have been making great films since the mid 80's and they're showing no signs of slowing down. Inside Llewyn Davis is another great addition to their cannon. It features a potential star making turn for Oscar Isaac, a solid performance by Carey Mulligan, and yet another scene stealing performance by John Goodman.
Oscar Isaac is an extremely talented man. HIs acting in this film is terrific, but it's his singing talent that really makes it work. It reminded of Once in a way. The music is the heart of the film and it's actually really good. I'm not really a fan of folk music, but I enjoyed the songs and Isaac's voice. Every time he sang I thought to myself this is nice.
It may not seem like it at first, but Inside Llewyn Davis has all the Coen style and humor most of us have come to love. It was a bit strange. There were times where it didn't necessarily feel like a Coen's film, and others where there was no mistaken it was. It's probably about the time John Goodman shows up you know without a doubt you're watching Joel & Ethan Coen do their thing. Goodman is simply fantastic in these small cameo type roles, and he's magic once again for the Coen's Honestly if he wasn't in it I'd probably lower my rating. His performance alone is worth a star.
I mentioned how good the music is, but it's how it's used that pulls the whole thing together. Each song seems to be played at the perfect time in the movie. Isaacs voice seamlessly carries us from one scene to the next with the grace of a seasoned musician. The words match the tone of the film perfectly.
I think the only reason I didn't rate it higher is the stiff competition it faces from other Coen films. I like No Country for Old Men, The Big Lebowski, and O Brother, Where Art Thou better so I settled on 4 stars. Like the majority of their work it's must see and one of the best films of 2013.