This Coen Brothers film also screens on Saturday 24th January at this venue. Details here.
Once you have seen the last scene in this fascinating movie I defy you not to want it watch again. And here's a a chance to do so again, two years after its release. Spoiler alert: Guardian critic and writer Dorian Lynskey was very intrigued by what the directors pulled off in the denoument to the movie and you can read his musings here. But don't try and do so till you have seen the film.
Chicago Reader review:
From a distance, this feature by Joel and Ethan Coen might resemble the brothers' 1991 farce Barton Fink: like the earlier movie, it evokes a specific showbiz milieu (Greenwich Village in the early 60s) as it follows an aspiring artist (a down-and-out folkie played by Oscar Isaac) who's based on a real-life figure (singer-guitarist Dave Van Ronk). Yet the broad, black humor of the Coens' early features (Blood Simple, Raising Arizona) has ripened over the years into a sadder, more philosophical brand of comedy (A Serious Man) that puts them in a class with Billy Wilder and Ernst Lubitsch (yeah, you heard me). Their theme here is the same as in Fink—the fraught relationship between art and commerce—but their key insight is noticeably more mature: a good artist must be in the right place at the right time to succeed, whereas a truly great one makes that time and place his own.
Here (and above) is the trailer.