So THE ASSASSINATION OF JESSE JAMES BY THE COWARD ROBERT FORD opens today in 4 cities and the critics are weighing in. And to to be honest, I am shocked. Granted, there are a lot of extremely positive reviews from major critics but there are a good number of middling reviews out there and I just don't get it. THIS FILM IS A MASTERPIECE, one of the best films of the decade. Seriously. Movie lovers could only hope for one film like this to come along each year. And my fear is that without superlative reviews across the board, it's gonna be tough to get people into the theaters to watch a long, psychological Western, even with Brad Pitt in the lead.
There's the link to rottentomatoes for the flick. It currently has a 72% fresh rating which is sold, but only a 55% cream of the crop rating. The film should be in the 90% column. I am SHOCKED that Manhola Darghis of the New York Times, one of the best and sharpest film critics in the county, took some shots at the movie. She was a huge supporter of Terry Malick's THE NEW WORLD, a similar film in many ways to JESSE JAMES. But she totally missed the point of JESSE JAMES, and her review, which isn't so much a review as it is a summation of the legend of Jesse James, is wrong on more than one count. This film is certainly going to divide critics and audiences but I am shocked that more people aren't flipping out for this film. It's a movie for adults that requires patience and an understanding of the genre; maybe people just won't get it. Sad.