United Forum
Go Back   United Forum > Everything else > Off Topic
Closed Thread
 
Old 23-02-2008, 04:54 AM
TreeFiddy
 
Default Another No Country For Old Men Thread - Interesting Insight Inside!

Just watched the film and thought it was great. Was a little disappointed with the ***spoiler***
sudden ending
at first, but not really surprised. I read some stuff on IMDB which was pretty interesting, particularly these two pieces below.

***spoiler***
NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN is an ALLEGORY.

The title is from the first line of Sailing to Byzantium by William Butler Yeats, a poet classically trained and considered by many to be the greatest 20th Century poet.

Death is Anton Chigurh. His hair style (hood-ish, shroud-ish) and black clothing suggest Death. Death kills the innocent as well as the guilty and has his own set of rules. When the witness to the high-rise killing asks, “Are you going to kill me?” Death answers, “It depends. Do you see me?” When the kids on the bicycles help him after the car accident he tells them, “You didn’t see me.” If you see Death, you die; if not, you may live. Chigurh seems to come and go at will and seems to know where Moss is without trying very hard. His rules are his rules and they seem arbitrary and random. He is referred to by the sheriff as a “ghost” and he seems to be able to go wherever he pleases.

Death kills with a cattle stun gun, almost like a member of the clergy administering a cross to the forehead of a parishoner. Death is often portrayed as a hooded figure with a scythe; in this case he’s a “hooded” figure with a cattle stun gun.

Man is Llewellen Moss, part sinner, part saint. He is offered a deal with Death when Death offers to ignore his wife but take him. Instead, Llewellen challenges Death and chooses declines the offer. This is straight Faustian bargaining. By declining Death’s “This is the best deal you’re gonna get” Moss signs not only his own death warrant but his wife’s, too.

Llewellen challenges Death to a showdown and when his wife tells the sheriff, “He won’t quit, neither. Never has.” the audience expects a later showdown because we’ve been trained to see the protagonist take on the antagonist at the climax of a story — but before that can happen life’s randomness gets in the way and the Mexicans kill him. This is the major turn in the movie and the one that takes the sail out of the audience, which has been cheering for Man in his struggle against Death without realizing it.

Free Will is Carla Jean. She chooses at the end of the film not to allow Death to be random. She has a 50% chance of saving herself but chooses not to avail herself of the opportunity. She is the bravest of the lot, choosing to die by her own decision and not the randomness of Death.

The sheriff is the philosopher trying to understand the universe. He cannot and is defeated by Death in his attempt. At the movie’s end the Sheriff bemoans the fact that God never entered his life. One of God’s creatures, Death, was in the Sheriff’s life but he didn’t realize it (see “Scene with Sheriff” below). The story is the Sheriff’s, his quest to understand Life, and the dream he tells at the end of the movie explains that his own father, long dead, has gone before him into the darkness of death and awaits him.

Interesting parallel — Moss pays money for a coat as he crosses into Mexico; Chigurh pays the kids money for a shirt after his accident. What is meant by that? Cannot be a coincidence.

Chigurh walking away from the accident at the end shows that Death cannot be stopped. It will always walk the streets. It is a part of our existence forever.

Scene with the Sheriff and Death at the same hotel room at the same time but the Sheriff does not see Death. This scene is vital — it solidifies the allegory. The Sheriff enters the room but does not see Death and so he does not die. Death sees the sheriff but chooses not to kill him because he’s not seen in return. This scene is the “supernatural” scene which signals that we’ve watching an allegory, that what we’ve been watching is more than it appears.

Why 1980 for the book/film when it was written in 2005? Could it be it was begun then and the author simply chose not to update it? What is the reason? Must be one. Might be nothing more than the author started this 25 years ago and didn’t feel like updating it to present times.



***spoiler***
On the dreams:
the meaning of the two dreams can be thought of as Bell's fear of some final judgment. The dreams are symbolic, so by whom Bell will be judged is up for interpretation.

Bell explains the first dream to his wife briefly, trying not to make too much of it. But, the meaning is quite significant. He says his father met him in town and gave him some money, but he (Bell) lost it. This can be seen as Bell feeling as if he were entrusted with something valuable, but failed to protect it. See this as his responsibility as a law enforcement officer, the lives of the people he was responsible for protecting, his father's wisdom, and so on. It's an acknowledgment of his feelings of failure.

The second dream is connected with the first. In the second dream, he says he and his father were riding through the mountains in the old times. His father rode up ahead of him and went on into the cold and dark with some fire. Bell said that he knew when he got to where his father was going, his father would be there waiting for him.

His father going up ahead into the cold, dark night with the fire representing his father passing from the physical world into the afterlife (whatever that may be). The fire could represent Bell's father's lifeforce, or spirit.

Bell knows he's going to where his father went, and as the final curtain starts to come down on his life, he's second-guessing his whole existence. What will his father have to say about it?

In those final speeches we see that he is really thinking about how he might be largely responsible for his own failings (the first dream), and for him, going on up ahead into the cold darkness and eventually meeting his father means just what you think: He's heading toward the end and a possible final judgment, either by his father, or God, or whomever. And Bell is afraid that if there is a final judgment, it may be a harsh one. Did he measure up to the old-time lawmen? Did he make his father proud? Did he fail more than any of his predecessors in law enforcement (his father, grandfather, etc.) did? After all, he failed to protect Llewelyn and Carla Jean Moss.

He's contemplating what many people contemplate as they get old and the curtain starts coming down on their lives: How should I be judged for the life I've lived?

 
Old 23-02-2008, 05:01 AM
Stone Monkey
 
Default

Tree. You are gay.

NFT
 
Old 23-02-2008, 05:26 AM
TreeFiddy
 
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Stone Monkey
Tree. You are gay.

NFT
Ouch. You cut me deep, Monkey Man.
 
Old 23-02-2008, 09:18 AM
Whalefish
 
Default

I'd be more inclined to agree with what Cormac McCarthy says on the subject matter since he wrote the novel but interesting nonetheless. Cheers fiddy.

I still have problems with this type of interpretation, have done ever since I studied film at University but it's not without merit.
 
Old 23-02-2008, 03:12 PM
TreeFiddy
 
Default

I'm not sure whether this interpretation is what was truly intended by McCarthy or the Coen brothers, but I thought it was still pretty interesting and nicely put nonetheless.
 
Old 23-02-2008, 04:10 PM
Stone Monkey
 
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by TreeFiddy
Ouch. You cut me deep, Monkey Man.
It was late, I was bored and the wine had gone to my head

 
Old 23-02-2008, 04:18 PM
Crumps
 
Default

This is why media studies courses should be banned.
 
Old 23-02-2008, 04:22 PM
jaffo
 
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by TreeFiddy
I'm not sure whether this interpretation is what was truly intended by McCarthy or the Coen brothers, but I thought it was still pretty interesting and nicely put nonetheless.
I agree, thanks for posting it
Closed Thread
Thread Tools
Similar Threads for: Another No Country For Old Men Thread - Interesting Insight Inside!
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Official 'This Country is Going to the Dogs Thread' thrills_pills_bellyaches Off Topic 7 10-12-2007 05:41 AM
Welcome to Fountz's incredibly interesting trees thread.. Fountz Off Topic 26 22-08-2007 11:38 AM
The Paris Hilton Thread - Many pics inside TreeFiddy Off Topic 20 29-03-2007 09:38 AM
All times are GMT. The time now is 01:45 PM.

Copyright ©2006 - 2018 utdforum.com. This site is in no way affiliated to Manchester United Football Club.