As I'm sure you know, True Grit is a remake of the 1969 John Wayne flick and an adaptation of the novel by Charles Portis, and it's just great. True Grit is the story of Mattie Ross, whip-smart and mourning the murder of her father by a serial criminal named Tom Chaney. She enlists Reuben "Rooster" Cogburn (Jeff Bridges) and Texas Ranger LaBoeuf (Matt Damon) to help her. Rooster is a character we've seen before, the spectactular screwup who's really a hero in disguise but his relationship with Mattie is tender and kindly. The men find Mattie laughable at first- a fourteen year old girl, of all things, bent on bringing in a hardened criminal- but they grow to respect her, and she grows to love them. The final scene is heartbreaking and eloquent.
True Grit is up for ten Academy Awards, including Best Picture, Best Director, Best Adapted Screenplay and acting nods for Bridges and Steinfeld. I loved Steinfeld- she was unbelievable and hope she wins- but I think Bridges had an easy, flashy role and the real work was done by Damon. He was great. I like him generally but he was fabulous in this movie. The only thing that put me off the movie even a little was the violence- not so much the shooting as some of the up-close-and-personal stuff involving fingers and later, snakes. But it's a Coen brothers movie so what can you do. My suggestion? Go see this now!
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