A teacher lives a lonely life, all the while struggling over his son's custody. His life slowly gets better as he finds love and receives good news from his son, but his new luck is about to be brutally shattered by an innocent little lie.
Thomas Bo Larsen,
Follow a week in the life of a young folk singer as he navigates the Greenwich Village folk scene of 1961. Guitar in tow, huddled against the unforgiving New York winter, he is struggling to make it as a musician against seemingly insurmountable obstacles -- some of them of his own making. Written by
When Llewyn checks out his and Mike's record, "If We Had Wings" in the Gorstein's apartment in the beginning of the film, the bio underneath Mike Timlin's name is word-for-word that of Dave Van Ronk. See more »
US 80 does NOT go through Akron. That's I-80 (not built in 1961). US 80 goes from Savannah to Dallas. See more »
Oscar Isaac is Incredible! Coens Best Since 'Fargo'
I am completely smitten. I have long admired Joel Coen and Ethan Coen
and what they have offered the realm of cinema. I am in love with
"Fargo" still until this day, and they've provided solid efforts on
nearly every outing since. Their newest endeavor that focuses on the
folk scene in 1961 is an absolute dream. Everything from the impeccable
Oscar Isaac to the music that enriches the deepest trenches of the
soul, "Inside Llewyn Davis" is one of the best pictures of the year,
plain and simple. It's the Coen Brothers finest film since "Fargo."
Our story begins with a folk singer, Llewyn Davis that has continued to
pursue a music career in 1961 despite being penniless and lacking any
real stability. Migrating from couch to couch, we get a deep look into
a character with a dream that just won't die. As he fights for his
chance to share his voice with the world, following an unexpected loss
of his singing partner, Llewyn is hard to love. He makes poor choices
and seems to lack any responsibility in his life. It's a wonderful
creation of a character that offers insight into a changing time in our
First of all, I can't get the amazing music out of my head. All the
songs used are absolutely brilliant. Oscar Isaac's richly matured tone
is so soothing and authentic; I'm surprised a music company hasn't
nabbed him up to make a record yet. His opening and closing songs are
his, as well as the film's, pivotal moments that encapsulate the
endearing message and theme. "Hang Me, Oh Hang Me" and "Fare Thee Well
(Dink's Song)" are astonishing records that may not just fall into an
Oscar race but a Grammy wouldn't shock me in the least. It has the same
magical effect as "Searching for Sugar Man," two films that seemed to
capture the innocence and culture of a generation that seems lost. In
terms of performance, Isaac is incredible. So raw and genuine, it's one
of the year's finest performances by any actor. He has made himself one
of the most exciting actors to watch in the coming years. This will
lead him into more challenging and accessible roles. This guy could
become one of our finest actors in just five years' time. This is
something that should land him an Oscar nomination for Best Actor. It's
very much deserved.
In their respective but short screen times, John Goodman, Garrett
Hedlund, and Carey Mulligan are all infectious and notable. Goodman
plays a character similar to his "Harling Mays" from Robert Zemeckis'
"Flight" and makes the most out of his appearance. Mulligan is volatile
and I loved every second of her. She brings lots of dark humor and fire
to a role that shows the depth of her abilities as an actress who can
perform impeccably in any genre. We even get her singing again which
had me melt two years ago during her "New York, New York" in Steve
McQueen's "Shame." Hedlund comes and goes but makes his mark as he
Justin Timberlake has made a seamless transition from musician to actor
and back to musician. Great in roles like "The Social Network" where
his star power doesn't distract from the story at hand, in a Coen
Brothers film, where he sings (in a very current pop way), he becomes a
bit distracting. I was very aware that Timberlake, probably this
generation's Michael Jackson, was sharing the screen. More than likely
not his fault, it could be a case of being "too big" for your movie.
One thing that the film has taught me we need to give Adam Driver more
movie roles. Timberlake, Isaac, and Driver put their marks on one of
the songs "Please Mr. Kennedy," and make it one of the year's most fun
and remarkable numbers.
Joel and Ethan Coen continue to show their ranges in directing and
writing. Flawlessly executed in character understanding and keeping our
story moving. Llewyn Davis is such a complex and interesting man and
their screenplay gives Isaac room to breathe and explore the subtle
nuances that make his character unique and real. As their alter ego
Roderick Jaynes, the film moves like a smooth monorail, hitting all its
marks and picking up new and exciting quirks along the way.
An almost silver-green canvas evokes the dark and grey tones of the New
York scene in 1961. Cinematographer Bruno Delbonnel masterfully
captures the ticks and beats of Isaac as he sings with heartbreaking
emotion and walks through the frigid cold streets. Jess Gonchor's
production design places us all in the folk scene, with intimate bar
settings, old-time music studios, and even the classic feel of a
Greenwich Village apartment building.
CBS Films has a gem on their hands with "Inside Llewyn Davis." A sure-
fire Oscar contender in several categories including Best Picture. If
there's any justice in the film world, Oscar Isaac would firmly sit
near the top of the finest performances of 2013 in Best Actor and nab
nearly every award he comes in contact with. "Inside Llewyn Davis" is
sensational and an instant classic to be remembered.
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