I would like to issue a formal apology to Jeff Bridges. I am truly sorry for being mad at you for using Jeffy as a stand in during Tron: Legacy, because this movie was clearly worth it. Any movie with both Jeff Bridges and Matt Damon at the top of their games is almost an automatic must-see, but if you were skeptical fear no more. This is a movie that you have to see right now. It’s 4:40 am you say? I don’t care. Go. Now. It’s that good.
In case you didn’t know, this version of True Grit is a remake of the movie True Grit filmed in 1969 starring John Wayne. And THAT version was an adaptation of a book. So really, I’m not sure whether this can be considered a remake considering how different it is than the original movie, and how much closer it is to the book. It’s like calling Charlie and the Chocolate Factory a remake of Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory. They’re both adaptations of a book, but either way you cut it, a fat kid gets sucked up a tube and and a girl becomes a giant blueberry, so who am I to decide. Enough of candy talk though. If I had to compare the two different versions of this film, I would have to say that the 2010 version outshines the 1969 version. Although John Wayne is the king of westerns, Jeff Bridges plays a better “badass loose-cannon cowboy” than John Wayne does for this film. Bridges is just grittier, and I apologize for the horrible pun.
Basically, what this movie is about is a girl(Hailee Steinfield) who is seeking to avenge her father’s murder. She hires US Marshal Rooster Cogburn (Bridges) to find the murderer, Tom Chaney (Brolin), and bring him back to be hanged. However, before they can be on their way, they meet a Texas Ranger (Damon) who is attempting to find Chaney and bring him in for murdering a Texas Senator. They join forces and disband several times in this film, go through many misadventures, and partake in various witty banter. I can’t go on much or I will give away things that I shan’t be giving away. It is a great plot though, which is more of a compliment to the book rather than the movie.
The most important aspect of a movie like this is execution, and I believe this movie passed with flying colors in that department. Jeff Bridges was an excellent choice for this character, and Matt Damon was a good fit for his, although its an odd experience seeing Matt Damon out of his two niche characters, super action government guy, or super paper pushing government guy. Stretching out has proven beneficial for Mr. Damon it would seem. Hailee Steinfield also did a great job. She fit the character, I feel, better than the original actress. Of course, she had to do well in this movie because her’s was a major role, and I don’t think there was much screen time without her presence. There was plenty of witty dialogue in this movie, mainly either from Bridges’ character, or between Bridges’ and Damon’s characters. While many of these moments were in the ’69 movie, they weren’t nearly as smooth as they were in this movie. Bridges and Damon really had chemistry in this film and they definitely brought their characters to a new light. I’ve never been a huge western fan, but this is one of those movies that you have to see regardless. Even if you don’t think you’ll like it, you have to see it for the cast. It’s kind of like a small scale The Expendables with a better plot, less explosions and better production. But yes, I definitely recommend this movie to anyone, including people who don’t like westerns. It’s too good to miss.
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