BN.com Gift Guide

The Brothers Grim: The Films of Ethan and Joel Coen / Edition 1

Paperback (Print)
Used and New from Other Sellers
Used and New from Other Sellers
from $21.50
Usually ships in 1-2 business days
(Save 52%)
Other sellers (Paperback)
  • All (7) from $21.50   
  • New (3) from $39.87   
  • Used (4) from $21.50   

Overview

In 1984 Joel and Ethan Coen burst onto the art-house film scene with their neo-noir Blood Simple and ever since then they have sharpened the cutting edge of independent film. Blending black humor and violence with unconventional narrative twists, their acclaimed movies evoke highly charged worlds of passion, absurdity, nightmare realms, and petty human failures, all the while revealing the filmmakers' penchant for visual jokes and bravura technical strokes. Their central characters may be blind to reality and individual flaws, but their illusions, dreams, fears, and desires map the boundaries of their worlds—worlds made stunningly memorable by the Coens.

In The Brothers Grim: The Films of Ethan and Joel Coen, Erica Rowell unmasks the filmmakers as prankster mythmakers exploiting and subverting universal storytelling modes to further what seems to be their artistic agenda: to elicit laughs. Often employing satire and allegory, the Coens' movies hold a mirror up to American society, allowing viewers to both chuckle and gasp at its absurdities, hypocrisies, and foibles. From business partnerships (Blood Simple, The Ladykillers) to marriage (Intolerable Cruelty) to friendship and ethics (Miller's Crossing), the breakdowns of relationships are a steady focus in their work. Often the Coens' satires put broken social institutions in their cinematic crosshairs, exposing cracks in ineffective penal systems (Raising Arizona; O Brother, Where Art Thou?), unjust justice systems (The Man Who Wasn't There), a crooked corporate America (The Hudsucker Proxy), unnecessary wars (The Big Lebowski), a tyrannical Hollywood (Barton Fink), and the unbridled, fatuous pursuit of the American Dream (Fargo). While audiences may be excused for missing the duo's social commentary, the depth and breadth of the brothers' films bespeak an intelligence and cultural acuity that is rich, highly topical, and hard to pigeonhole.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

Film International
Rowell examines [the Coen brothers] with greater concentration than the typical scattershot making-of or makers-of commentary, and even announces something like an analytical framework to apply to the films.
March 2008 American Reference Books Annual (ARBA)
...well written and engaging.
August 2007 Reference and Research Book News
Rowell (a journalist and film producer) titles each chapter examining a film from the prolific duo Joel and Ethan Coen (known as the Coen Brothers) after an object that figures so prominently in the movie that it is almost a character. In "Blood Simple: A Photo," "The Big Lebowski: A Bowling Ball" and the other essays, she offers a synopsis, review, and dissection of the themes, technique, influences, and stark social commentary of the often violent and satirical and always stylized Coen films. The writing-directing brothers also created Raising Arizona, Miller's Crossing, Oh, Brother, Where Art Thou? and Intolerable Cruelty.
American Reference Books Annual (ARBA)
...well written and engaging.
Reference and Research Book News
Rowell (a journalist and film producer) titles each chapter examining a film from the prolific duo Joel and Ethan Coen (known as the Coen Brothers) after an object that figures so prominently in the movie that it is almost a character. In "Blood Simple: A Photo," "The Big Lebowski: A Bowling Ball" and the other essays, she offers a synopsis, review, and dissection of the themes, technique, influences, and stark social commentary of the often violent and satirical and always stylized Coen films. The writing-directing brothers also created Raising Arizona, Miller's Crossing, Oh, Brother, Where Art Thou? and Intolerable Cruelty.
March 2008 American Reference Books Annual
...well written and engaging.
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780810858503
  • Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.
  • Publication date: 5/30/2007
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 392
  • Product dimensions: 6.08 (w) x 9.12 (h) x 1.11 (d)

Meet the Author

Erica Rowell has worked in the movie industry and as a journalist. Her work has been featured on Monitor Radio, FOXNEWS.com, ABCNEWS.com, and WNYC Radio. Her film credits include line producer on two independent features and art department coordinator on the studio feature, The Proposition (1998), starring Kenneth Branagh.

Read More Show Less

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
Introduction
1. Blood Simple: A Photo
2. Raising Arizona: A Baby
3. Miller's Crossing: A Hat
4. Barton Fink: A Head
5. The Hudsucker Proxy: A Circle
6. Fargo: Snow
7. The Big Lebowski: A Bowling Ball
8. O Brother, Where Art Thou?: A Song
9. The Man Who Wasn't There: A Flying Saucer
10. Intolerable Cruelty andThe Ladykillers: Spoils or Oh Brothers, Where Art Thou?
Appendix: Winks and Nods
Bibliography
Filmography
Index
About the Author

Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(0)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously

    If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
    Why is this product inappropriate?
    Comments (optional)