In 1941, New York intellectual playwright Barton Fink comes to Hollywood to write a Wallace Beery wrestling picture. Staying in the eerie Hotel Earle, Barton develops severe writer's block. His neighbor, jovial insurance salesman Charlie Meadows, tries to help, but Barton continues to struggle as a bizarre sequence of events distracts him even further from his task. Written by
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John Turturro took classes at a secretarial school to learn how to use a typewriter for the role. Between takes, he wrote a rough outline for Romance & Cigarettes (2005), written on the typewriter he used in the film. The Coen brothers executive produced that film. See more »
When Mundt pulls the bedframe apart, the metal ball that drops to the floor has a metal rod through the center. When it hits the floor, the rod is nowhere to be seen. See more »
I liken the Coen brothers to Haagen-Daz ice cream, i.e., various stages of good. I would argue this dark film, laden with more allegories than Dante, is not their best...but, it's good, damn good. To begin with, stellar performances form Turturro, Goodman, Mahoney, Buscemi and Lehner. The thing I find amazing is the skill in bringing so much darkness to such a bright, colorful cinemagraphic work-- remindful of Ingmar Bergman's Cries and Whispers, in that regard-- that teeters on the edge. Goodman's last scene walking into the burning hotel room is eerie but very bright (why not? The damn place is burning down.) This is another great Coen brother film and let's hear it for Ethan and Joel! See it!
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