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Inside Llewyn Davis (2013)

R  |   |  Drama, Music  |  10 January 2014 (USA)
7.5
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Ratings: 7.5/10 from 77,653 users   Metascore: 92/100
Reviews: 285 user | 505 critic | 47 from Metacritic.com

A week in the life of a young singer as he navigates the Greenwich Village folk scene of 1961.

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Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 61 wins & 124 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Jim
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Joy
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Marty Green
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Janet Fung
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Joe Flom
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Storyline

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 Production

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Music

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language including some sexual references | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

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Language:

Release Date:

10 January 2014 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Balada de un hombre común  »

Filming Locations:

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Box Office

Budget:

$11,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$405,411 (USA) (6 December 2013)

Gross:

$13,214,255 (USA) (7 March 2014)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

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Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The valet driver for John Goodman's character mentions a stint in a play he did for three weeks called "The Brig". This refers to a Living Theatre production in the early 1960s, revived a few years ago along with a documentary about the production, by Dirk Szusies, former member of the Living Theatre and his partner Karin Kaper. See more »

Goofs

Ewan MacColl's The Shoals of Herring was composed for and first broadcasted in a BBC 'Radio Ballad' in August 1960. Since the film is set in 1961, Llewyn Davis could not have recorded this as an eight year old. See more »

Quotes

Llewyn Davis: In my experience, the world's divided into two kinds of people. The kind who divide the world into two kinds of people...
Jean: And losers?
See more »

Crazy Credits

At the end of the credits is an image declaring the film "Kosher for Passover" See more »

Connections

Featured in The EE British Academy Film Awards (2014) See more »

Soundtracks

Requiem in D Minor, Lacrimosa Dies
Written by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Performed by Slovak Philharmonic Orchestra (as Slovak Philharmonic Orchestra and Chorus) and Slovak Philharmonic Chorus (as Slovak Philharmonic Orchestra and Chorus)
Courtesy of Naxos of America
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Marvellous musical masterpiece
4 February 2014 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

There have been movies made about musicians, both real and imagined, from End of the Century through I'm Not There, taking in The Future is Unwritten and A Mighty Wind. We've had almost every conceivable approach, from straight-up documentary through imagined version of events as well as completely invented bands, singers, songs, and concerts. Yet, I don't think that anyone has ever managed to do what the Coen Brothers have produced with this tragic, comedic, touching piece.

Which is to essentially transport you into the grooves of an LP, Inside Llewyn Davies, and bring you a beautifully realised portrayal of the eponymous hero as he trudges his weary way through the greys and greens of Greenwich Village in a cold New York. And it is so reminiscent of the experience of listening to your favourite vinyl album from track one, side one to the final track of side two, whilst curling up on the couch with a cat in your lap, listening to a selection of melodic, melancholic, traditional, and new folk music.

The music binds this movie together and Oscar Issac inhabits the title role in a world-weary way that aches with ennui and longs for something never expressed. We follow his tramping travails through a range of vignettes that build subtly towards creating a quite compelling picture of the man behind the music. He sometimes does what we expect and at other junctures, veers off in a mad new direction. There is little explanation for any of the decisions that he does, or doesn't, take. He's searching without any clear idea of the quest.

Along the way, we meet a wonderfully diverse bunch of supporting characters, from the biting Jean, acerbic tongue and acid looks, through the snoring bully Roland Turner and his valet Johnny Five, as well as Mitch and Lilian, the Upper West posh couple, but especially Ulysses, our hero's apparent companion over the week (or was s/he?). They all offer opportunities to understand Davies' psyche slightly more, albeit admitting that not even he appears to be fully cognisant himself.

It's a lovely looking film, beautifully shot and much more enjoyable that I would have believed possible from watching the trailer previously. T Bone Burnett has done a sterling job on the soundtrack, it's so affecting and the way that the songs are all allowed to play out saw the audience in the cinema in which I saw this mainly remaining seated through the end credits as well. Which brings me back to the vinyl album sensation. You don't pick up the needle when your favorite record is playing the final track, because you want to get on with something else instead. No. You let it run right to the end of the groove and then your heart fills with an equal mixture of pleasure and joy, sorrow and sighs, as the last bars fade to quiet and all that's gone before becomes a memory that's so strong and so addictive that you want to turn it over and put the needle back into the groove all over again.

This movie is precisely like that sensation and I loved it, from first frame to last. A quiet understated tragi-comedy, dark in places, and shadowy in others, but with a humanity and a compassion that you cannot avert our gaze from. Hell, it's even got a coda of a scene to be dealing with, which at the end takes your mind back to the start of the production and forces one to reexamine what has just passed before your eyes. Recommended.


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