The Coens’ take on Prohibition gangster wars is remarkable for its wondrous labyrinthine complexity.
Dir Joel Coen
With Gabriel Byrne, Albert Finney, Marcia Gay Harden, John Turturro
Revisiting the crimeworld of Dashiell Hammett, the Coens’ labyrinthine tale of Prohibition warfare focuses on a middle-man (Byrne) trying to keep the peace between two gang bosses while navigating his own devious path through the battlefield for reasons best known to himself. Announcing itself as a meditation on ‘friendship, character, ethics’, the film glories in loyalty and treachery, secrets and lies, complexity and chaos.