Sunday, September 22, 2013
#tbt The Big Lebowski review
If you asked me my favorite movie, I couldn't give you a single answer. Pulp Fiction, The Shawshank Redemption, Fight Club, American Beauty, Back to the Future, Donnie Darko, Blade Runner, The Departed, and a whole menagerie of movies would follow along with detailed explanations on why I love each film. High on my list of favorites is the fantastic 1998 Coen Brothers classic, The Big Lebowski. I consider it one of the most quotable and rewatchable movies of all time. It combines terrific character acting, a hilarious story, and a great soundtrack for one fantastic movie. I think I've seen The Big Lebowski more than I've seen any other movie. For some reason, I could watch it over and over again with out getting bored. It's a perfect showcase for Joel and Ethan Coen's sheer genius. It's definitely what made them able to make such greats like True Grit and A Serious Man. The story for this film is so crazy and original, I honestly don't know how the Coen's did it. It's the mid-90's, and slacker Jeff "The Dude" Lebowski (Jeff Bridges) is living a comfortable life in southern California. Bowling, drinking White Russians, and taking it easy are some of The Dude's favorite pastimes. By a serious of coincidences, The Dude gets confused with the millionaire paraplegic of the same name, Jeffrey Lebowski or, The Big Lebowski (David Huddleston). In the process his rug gets peed on by a pair of thugs. So The Dude sets out to get his rug back. He soon learns that The Big Lebowski's trophy wife has apparently been kidnapped and he is given the job of getting her back. There are other dilemmas and connected problems, but The Dude's biggest issue is what he hasn't faced ever before. Responsibility. Yeah, I know the plot sounds kind of ridiculous and complicated. But it's really not as bad as you'd think. The great thing about this movie is that no one part is better than the other really. Every bit of it works to make this film as good as it is. The obvious strength to The Big Lebowski is Jeff Bridges performance. It's so colorful, funny, and different. If you look at some of Bridge's performances before Lebowski, they were still mostly good. Yet, none of them can even parallel to his role here. Jeff Bridges will always be a terrific actor, but I think his role in The Big Lebowski may always be his best performance. Don'e be fooled though, Bridges isn't the only good one here. It has a terrific supporting cast. John Goodman, like Bridges, is a really good actor and a Coen Brother's regular. Here he plays Walter Sobchak, one of The Dude's bowling teammates and friend. He's also a Vietnam War veteran and really can't let go of his ex-wife. He's always doing crazy things like bringing up Vietnam for no reason and pulling a gun at a bowling alley. Goodman executes it with expert comedic timing. Steve Buscemi has a slightly smaller role as Walter and The Dude's bowling teammate and friend, Donny Kerabatsos. He's a fairly quiet and mousy character who's incredibly good at bowling. Donny actually isn't a huge part of the story but Buscemi makes him so funny and strange, that he becomes an important part of the movie. Julianne Moore is also great here as The Big Lebowski's daughter, Maude. Philip Seymour Hoffman, John Turturro, Tara Reid, and Peter Stormare all have good, but smaller, roles here. I actually really like the soundtrack to the film. It combines some Rolling Stones, Bob Dylan, Creedence Clearwater Revival; all of which are used perfectly. The story's crazy, the screenplay is quotable and witty as hell, the acting is beyond great, and the direction is fantastic. I have very few complaints for this. If you haven't seen The Big Lebowski, do it now! Just writing this review is making me want to rewatch it. So sit back, relax, make yourself a White Russian, and watch the movie. Happy Viewing and Happy Throwback Thursday guys! Also, sorry I'm putting this "Throwback Thursday review" on a Sunday. I had a lot of stuff to do and couldn't get around to it. Anyway, remember you can always follow me on Twitter @WhitsMovies and like me on Facebook at Facebook.com/WhitsMovies. See ya! P.S. I know I reviewed this a long while back, but I looked and it was a scant and uninformative review that I needed to update. So, here it is!