The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford

( 17 )

Overview

Brad Pitt stars as legendary Wild West outlaw Jesse James in Chopper director Andrew Dominik's cinematic rendering of the events that would eventually bring about the death of the man rumored be the "fastest gun in the West." An eager recruit into James' notorious gang, Robert Ford eventually grows jealous of the famed outlaw. When Robert and his brother Charlie sense an opportunity to kill James, their murderous action elevates their target to near mythical status. Casey Affleck stars as Robert Ford and Sam ...
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Overview

Brad Pitt stars as legendary Wild West outlaw Jesse James in Chopper director Andrew Dominik's cinematic rendering of the events that would eventually bring about the death of the man rumored be the "fastest gun in the West." An eager recruit into James' notorious gang, Robert Ford eventually grows jealous of the famed outlaw. When Robert and his brother Charlie sense an opportunity to kill James, their murderous action elevates their target to near mythical status. Casey Affleck stars as Robert Ford and Sam Shepard co-stars as Frank James -- Jesse's devoted sibling and partner in crime.
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Special Features

Making of documentary: The Assassination of Jesse James: Death of an Outlaw
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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Perry Seibert
Director Andrew Dominik adopts a style throughout his new psychological western The Assassination of Jesse James By the Coward Robert Ford that he believes will give the film the weight and seriousness of an epic. The movie runs a stately 160 minutes not because there is too much action or too many sequences, but because conversations are edited so that protracted silences occur between every line of dialogue. For the first 30 minutes, as the members of the gang are introduced while they plan and execute a train robbery, Dominik is at his best. The deliberate tone and slow pace make this a unique and rewarding sequence, but the next 90 minutes of the film eats away that interest. Casey Affleck embodies the creepy stalker elements of Robert Ford with great skill, but his boyish face keeps him from ever being truly threatening -- perfect casting considering what the director does with the character. Ford's obsession with Jesse James played as alternately psychotic or brooding by Brad Pitt manages to be complete, without being in any way sexual. He's a boy trying to figure out what he wants to be when he grows up. His performance, in fact each performance throughout, is solid, but they are undermined by the film's pace. The editing style, which is obviously purposeful, hampers the film's protracted middle because while the film suggests many reasons why Ford kills Jesse, it never seems to take a stand on the issue. Jealousy, fear, duty, and a desire for celebrity are all presented as possibilities, but often these different motivations seem to conflict directly with each other. Over dinner with the Ford family, James humiliates the 20-year-old Robert, and one would think that his actions from then on stem from a desire for revenge, but even after the embarrassment, Ford is seen sniffing James' bedding. A film can be open-ended and open to interpretation, yet still present an explanation as to why everyone was interested in the material to begin with. The movie plays like the director wanted to make the film in order to figure out his own feeling about Robert, but never came to any resolution. The final 20 minutes, after Ford shoots Jesse and must live with the consequences, bring the proceedings back to life. As Robert revels in his notoriety, the viewer can draw so many parallels with what went on before that one can start to see that the material might have supported the stately rhythm. As it is, The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford is a failure, but the combination of ideas, however unformed, and the style make it a genuine attempt at something new -- which makes the film more interesting than most failures.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 2/5/2008
  • UPC: 012569829725
  • Original Release: 2007
  • Rating:

  • Source: Warner Home Video
  • Presentation: Wide Screen
  • Sound: Dolby AC-3 Surround Sound
  • Language: Fran├žais
  • Time: 2:40:00
  • Format: Blu-ray
  • Sales rank: 22,915

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Brad Pitt Jesse James
Casey Affleck Robert Ford
Sam Shepard Frank James
Mary-Louise Parker Zee James
Paul Schneider Dick Liddil
Jeremy Renner Wood Hite
Zooey Deschanel Dorothy Evans
Sam Rockwell Charley Ford
Garret Dillahunt Ed Miller
Brooklyn Proulx Mary James
Dustin Bollinger Tim James
Joel McNichol Express Manager
James DeFelice Baggagemaster
J.C. Roberts Engineer
Darrell Orydzuk Ukranian Train Passenger
Jonathan Erich Drachenberg Young Train Passenger
Torben S. Hansen Danish Train Passenger
Alison Elliott Martha Bolton
Lauren Calvert Ida
Kailin See Sarah Hite
Tom Aldredge Major George Hite
Jesse Frechette Albert Ford
Pat Healy Wilbur Ford
Michael Parks Henry Craig
Michael Parks Henry Craig
Ted Levine Sheriff Timberlake
Joel Duncan Deputy
James Carville Governor Crittenden
Stephanie Wahlstrom Store Customer
Adam Arlukiewicz Newsboy
Ian Ferrier Photographer
Michael Rogers Onlooker at Jesse's Death
Calvin Bliid Small Boy at Jesse's Death
Sarah Lind Bob's Girlfriend
Nick Cave Bowery Saloon Singer
Matthew Walker Bowery Saloonkeeper
Michael Copeman Edward O'Kelly
Laryssa Yanchak Ella Mae Waterson
Hugh Ross Voice Only
Matt Dunkley Conductor
Technical Credits
Andrew Dominik Director, Screenwriter
Ricardo Alms Set Decoration/Design
Christopher Aud Sound/Sound Designer
Cheryl Bainum Executive Producer
Guy Bews Stunts
Jean A. Black Makeup
Bruce Carwardine Sound/Sound Designer
Nick Cave Score Composer
Curtiss Clayton Editor
Helen Uffner Vintage Clothing Costumes/Costume Designer
Chad Cosgrave Stunts
Colt Cosgrave Stunts
Jules Daly Producer
Roger Deakins Camera Operator, Cinematographer
Joe A. Dodds Stunts
Jordon Dodds Stunts
Brett Edge Stunts
Lyle Edge Stunts
Tom W. Eirikson Stunts
Warren Ellis Score Composer
Lisa Ellzey Executive Producer
Jim Finkbeiner Stunts
Wacey Finkbeiner Stunts
Mali Finn Casting
Dede Gardner Producer
Martin Gendron Art Director
Dale Gibson Stunts
Corry Glass Stunts
Tom Glass Stunts
Reg Glass Stunts
Jason Glass Stunts
Kristy Glass Stunts
Alex Green Stunts
Deb Green Casting
Brad Grey Executive Producer
Terry Gunvordahl Set Decoration/Design
Dennis Hambling Stunts
Randy Hambling Stunts
Ron Hansen Associate Producer
Dave Hospes Stunts
Marilyn Humphreys Set Decoration/Design
Richard King Sound/Sound Designer
Rejean Labrie Set Decoration/Design
Michael Langlois Stunts
Terrance Leigh Stunts
Jackie Lind Casting
Jacqueline Loewen Stunts
Michael Madden Set Decoration/Design
Brad Milburn Set Decoration/Design
Pat Norris Costumes/Costume Designer
Amanda Paller Special Effects
James Paradis Special Effects Supervisor
Jason Paradis Special Effects
Brad Pitt Producer
Shane Pollitt Stunts
Rochelle L. Pomerleau Makeup
Jim Randle Stunts
Scott Andrew Robertson Asst. Director
Greg Schlosser Stunts
Blake Schlosser Stunts
Ridley Scott Producer
Tony Scott Executive Producer
John Scott Stunts
Hayden S. Scott Special Effects
Leslie Shatz Sound/Sound Designer
Troy Sizemore Art Director
Rick Skene Stunts
Sean Skene Stunts
Jodi Terhoch Stunts
Jesse Thomson Stunts
Kyle Thomson Stunts
Dylan Tichenor Editor
Christien Tinsley Makeup Special Effects
David Valdes Producer
Grant Van Der Slagt Set Decoration/Design
Benjamin Waisbren Executive Producer
Gordon White Set Decoration/Design
Ross Wideman Stunts
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 17 )
Rating Distribution

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(9)

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Sort by: Showing all of 17 Customer Reviews
  • Posted July 27, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Good

    While the movie was a little long, the acting was good, especially the music and cinematography. Long title though.

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  • Posted October 1, 2010

    Perfect

    I thought this movie was flat out perfect.
    It is a slow-paced, inward, contemplative film.
    Beutifully shot, the visuals are perfect, and give the film a special touch, a mood that is also set by the narrative in the beginning. As if it was always late in the afternoon, and the world was about to end.
    It really is a poetic movie, with heroic dimensions.The actors are, what more could I say, perfect. Brad Pitt is amazing,truly embodying the failin Jesse James, and Casey Affleck is such a great actor, and he plays the coward James Ford very well.

    I recommend it.

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  • Posted October 1, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Jesse James is stunning

    I can't say enough about how much I enjoyed this film. One of the few DVD's I bought without seeing first. I've watched it a dozen times since purchasing. It is nicely paced, thoughtful adaptation of Hansen's novel. Brad Pitt plays James not as dime store novel hero but as a ruthless, suspicious outlaw who doesn't trust anyone. Casey Affleck as Robert Ford is the young man who looks up to James, emulates him and finally shoots him. The supoorting cast, especialy Sam Rockwell are fantastic. The music by Nick Cave and the photography are outstanding. A really fine film which gets better with each viewing

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  • Posted October 1, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Amazing film, very UNDERRATED

    This film is filled with nothing but beauty. The acting is incredible including Brad Pitt (which im not personally a fan of). Brad Pitt does an amazing job at making the characters (and the audience) uncomfortable and nervous, remaining always one step ahead of everyone and knowing your every move. Casey Affleck is very underrated, being the better of the afflecks, he portrayed a cowardess and weak character, yet, yearning and oblivious to it's precision. You hate what he does in the movie, but at the end, you wanna feel sorry for him.alot of my love goes to the score composed by Nick Cave and Warren Ellis. It's amazing! If you didnt enjoy the movie, the soundtrack will move you at least (note the scene where they actually kill jesse james, amazing cinematography with the perfect score) dont go into expecting a western and violence. Expect a character study of obsession and greed (robert ford), and of depression and insanity (Jesse James).

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  • Posted October 1, 2010

    A suprisingly good western Drama.

    not really what i expected, when i wathed this i was really suprised by how good it was.
    The acting is great, the characters are dynamic, and everything about this film just draws you in.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    very overrated

    I went into this film with high expectations, all of which were let down. Long, plodding, poorly paced, and beat you over the head with its way too obvious themes. Bad.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    One of the most best and most underrated films of the year.

    I was really disappointed that this film didnt do better than it did. Casey Affleck in particular gave the performance of a lifetime. I read somewhere that at times it seemed like he was hating Jesse with one eye and loving him with the other, and its absolutely true. Considering that you know how the movie is going to end, the level of tension he and the director create is truly remarkaable.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    An Homage to Western History in a Moody Daguerreotype Style

    THE ASSASSINATION OF JESSE JAMES BY THE COWARD ROBERT FORD is one of the finer films about the history of the Old West 'heroes' such as Jesse James. It is difficult to describe the degree of high quality of the way in which this film has been created: the script (adapted by Andrew Dominick from Ron Hansen's novel) is as poetic as it is gritty and flows like a Shakespearean tragedy both in narration and in dialog the exceptionally fine cinematography by Roger Deakins captures the flavor of the times, shot in subtle lighting whether in darkly intimate interiors or on the vast plains at times heightened by snowlight, but always in the feeling of the quality of daguerreotypes the musical score by Nick Cave and Warren Ellis is strangely apropos without seeming to borrow from any previous source and the cast of fine actors play the film as a true ensemble work. Director Andrew Dominik has accomplished a masterpiece. The story begins subtly in the last year of the James gang at the final train robbery in 1881. Jesse James (Brad Pitt) and his brother Frank (Sam Shepard) have gathered remnant criminals to bolster their decimated gang - Dick Liddel (Paul Schneider), Ed Miller (Garret Dillahunt), and Wood Hite (Jeremy Renner) among them. The Ford brothers want to ride with Jesse: 19-year old Robert (Casey Affleck) idolizes Jesse and his older brother Charley (Sam Rockwell) enjoys the attention of the gang's fame. Jesse James, at only age 34, is at the end of his career, content to be at home with his wife Zee (Mary Louise Parker) and children. But Robert's adoration results in a chain of events that slowly dissembles the gang and results in Robert's obsessive revenge for Jesse's murder of one of the members fired by the promise of reward for the capture of Jesse James, dead or alive. History and the title of the film tell the plot so there are no surprises here. It is the inevitable unfolding of the drama and the tension of the interplay of the actors that drives the mood of the story. The film does not stop with the killing of Jesse James but instead follows the descent of the lives of Robert (now wealthy and in love a stripper - Zooey Deschanel) and the progressing insanity of Charley to an end that fades like the proverbial sunset on a time in our history we will never forget. Each of the actors is exceptional, and despite the glory of having big name stars associated with the cast, the effect is one of pure ensemble work. The 160 minute running time of the film never seems too long, so well timed is the pacing of the story and the pauses for understanding the interior aspects of each character's mind. This is a haunting film, unusually fine in every detail. It deserves, and demands, attention. Grady Harp

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    Posted December 17, 2011

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    Posted September 17, 2009

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    Posted January 15, 2010

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    Posted October 28, 2008

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Sort by: Showing all of 17 Customer Reviews