Tuesday, June 08, 2010

Review: Crazy Heart

Sometimes redemption doesn't turn out the way you want it, but it doesn't make it less sweet.

I finally watched "Crazy Heart" last week, and it's a movie that actually exceeded my fairly high expectations. The story is about an alcoholic country singer/songwriter who gets a second shot at life.

Although the supporting acting is all solid, Jeff Bridges astounds in this role. Reportedly, he was told to be the "6th Highwayman" and he evokes memories of both Waylon Jennings and Kris Kristofferson. Playing a drunk suits "The Dude," and Bridges is completely available as an alcoholic who still has a way with women. The film ultimately is a character study, with the supporting actors acting as foils for Bridges.
A film about a singer-songwriter wouldn't be complete without music, and the music in "Crazy Heart" is stellar. From Colin Farrell as a believable country artist (Ferrell could have easily been a Nashville star) to Jeff Bridges singing exactly like you think he might. The movie would fall flat if the songs themselves were lousy, but most of them are solid and a couple are even memorable ("Fallin' Feels like Flyin'" and "The Weary Kind"). Ryan Bingham (the composer for many of the movie's songs) is one to watch.
Although the film is gritty, it's one I'd recommend.

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