Friday, December 20, 2013

Inside Llewyn Davis

In a Greenwich Village on the precipice of the early 60s folk revival, a struggling troubadour (Oscar Isaac) whose singing partner has just taken his own life ("Who throws themselves off the George Washington bridge?") goes from couch to couch and one low end gig to another while contemplating a return to a mundane, more stable life in the Merchant Marines. Inside Llewyn Davis is another exceptional Coen Brothers concoction, blending elements from their previous works and yet establishing itself as a poignant original. Oscar Isaac has a tremendous breakthrough lead performance and does his own singing along with some of the songwriting on an fantastic soundtrack which also features contributions from Marcus Mumford, T-Bone Burnett, Justin Timberlake, and the Coens themselves. John Goodman and Timberlake are a hoot in minor supporting roles while Carey Mulligan doesn't quite hit the right notes as a bitchy singer and sometimes bedfellow of Isaac.