The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford (2007)
Existential, paranoid Western about, as the title would imply, the events leading to and following the assassination by Jesse James (Brad Pitt) by the weeener Robert Ford (Casey Affleck).
I sort of liked this movie... I mean, it was beautifully photographed (shot in Canada's Texas), it had that based-on-a-novel goodness, complete with narration, and hells, it was a Western. Westerns are awesome.
But Casey Affleck was so annoying. He was weenie, but not quite weenie enough to be interesting. He was just slightly weenie, and really irritating.
Generally speaking, I don't like Brad Pitt unless he's playing some kind of unconventional weirdo or total maniac (i.e., 12 Monkeys, Fight Club, Snatch or True Romance), but I did like his performance in this. I never thought of him as Brad Pitt.
The biggest problem I really had with this movie was that, like the title, it was so unbelievably long. It could have been shaved by about an hour and made no difference whatsoever. I don't even remember what was taking up all that space. It seemed like a ninety minute, times two...
Two and a half hours of Casey Affleck being annoying. It was a killer. Apparently, the original cut was four hours long, so I should be thankful, really. Granted, I've watched the extended cut of Return of the King many times, but still, that pushes it. I have to get up and make a sandwich in the middle, and generally prefer the theatrical version. Although there is that one scene in there...
But I digress. This movie was good and not the mindless action-Western I am accustomed to (nothing wrong with action-Westerns...). It wasn't even a Western so much. I dunno, whatever. Still, it was too long for me to really pay attention to what was going on. There should be, like, a 90 minute loser-cut for those of us with short attention spans.
Written and Directed by: Andrew Dominik, based on the novel by Ron Hansen. Starring: Casey Affleck, Brad Pitt, Sam Rockwell, Jeremy Renner, Sam Shepard, Garret Dillahunt, Paul Schneider, Mary-Louise Parker.