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Biographical story of Loretta Lynn, a legendary country singer that came from poverty to worldwide fame. She rose from humble beginnings in Kentucky to superstardom and changing the sound and style of country music forever.
A detective in post-Katrina New Orleans has a series of surreal encounters with a troop of friendly Confederate soldiers while investigating serial killings of local prostitutes, a 1965 lynching, and corrupt local businessmen.
Tommy Lee Jones,
Tommy Lee Jones in perhaps his most unappreciated moment
As I recall from trade mags, back when this flick first came out, TNT approached TLJ to be the lead, but at the time, he was pondering his future in the film industry and was considering directing. He wanted more than Turner and his execs were offering as the lead actor, but agreed to sign on to the project for less if he could be given free reign to direct, which was a bargain for the price. What ensued was The Good Ole Boys as we know it.
The product is a Western equally worthy of mentioning in the same short list as Unforgiven, Silverado, 3:10 to Yuma and recent others. It is a classic Western that is as priceless as anything given to us from both Johns Wayne and Ford.
In the opening scenes, we watch a cowboy as he and his horse graze the high country; a scene that could occur at any time within our frontier history. He eventually heads home and then we are drawn into a turn of the century frontier settlement juxtapositioned with the old west; sweeping sky lines and open ranges slowly encroached by the advent of Westward Expansion and technology.
The story shows us how a cowboy out on the vast range, isolated by big sweeping scenes, with only his horse to keep him company, enters into the new century. After he sojourns back to the land of his roots, a beautiful and memorable story unfolds with the likes of Frances McDormand, Sissy Spacek, Sam Sheppard, Wilford Bremly and the (as far as I know) debut of Matt Damon waltz into the story to reveal hopes, dreams, missed opportunities and current dilemmas. Soon our cowboy is thrust into the new world with new problems. His leisurely life amongst cattle, horses and campfires is soon a distant memory. The choices he acts upon effect all those around him, and then while his input and decision unfold, he then must decide if he will stick around in this New World to witness the results or return to the wide-open country.
This story falls within the framework of time-honored classics; where we get to see the impact of certain choices made and the ramifications as they unfold. We witness familial love and hard decisions. What makes this most memorable are the aspects of very good story, memorable performances, and great visuals/sound score.
Currently TLJ enjoys worthy accolades for his roles in The Valley of Elah and No Country For Old Men, which should lead to inevitable Oscar nominations. His vision and performance in The Good Ole Boys, certainly worth-while for fans, should round out his current body of work.
8 of 10
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