THE BALLAD OF BUSTER SCRUGGS (MA15+)
The times, they must be rapidly a’changin’ when first-rate filmmakers of the likes of the Coen Brothers are sidestepping a traditional cinema release and choosing to premiere their work on a streaming platform. More will be following their lead from hereon in. In the past decade, the Coens have been at their very best when roaming the badlands of the American west with movies as magnificent as No Country For Old Men and True Grit.
So the good news here is that The Ballad Of Buster Scruggs
is chock-full of cunning cowpokes, ornery outlaws and frontier freaks doing their thing in the wild, wild west of yesteryear. The movie is best classified as an anthology piece, where six radically differing stories of deception, heartbreak, revenge, murder and madness are told on a chapter-by-chapter basis. There is a stack of great actors drifting in and out of frame, including James Franco, Brendan Gleeson, Zoe Kazan, David Krumholtz and an inspired Liam Neeson as a carney-cumundertaker not to be trusted.