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Blood Simple

Breaking up is hard  

Year: 1984 
Running Time:
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1 (XWide) 
Certificate: BBFC 18 Cert – Not suitable for under 18s 
Subtitles: The level of subtitling in this film is unknown to WSC 
Directed by Unknown 
Starring: Unknown  

In case you haven't heard, the Brothers Coen are two of the most unique filmmakers working busily away in the film world today. Their last movie, Fargo, was itself a return to the stripped down aesthetics of this, their first movie, Blood Simple. Hitting a high with this debut, it would seem the Coen's are simply refusing to come down . . .

The plot of Blood Simple is not a difficult one to follow. McDormand is married to seedy bar owner Dan Hedaya but has an affair with barman Getz. Hedaya hires impossibly seedy private dick M. Emmett Walsh to take the odd snap or two of the horny couple flagrante delicto but then decides what he really wants is them dead. Very dead. So he disappears for a while to go fishing . . .

Taking this plot of countless pulp novels and sleazy noirs, the Coen's take the simplest scenes and fill them with endless haunting silences and spaces. A simple disposing-of-the-body scene becomes a genuinely horrific sequence involving countless tensions and potentially gruesome acts. If you want a haunting, hypnotic night of murder, adultery, double crosses and premature burial then come see how it should be done. Coen style.

Pauline Lake

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Screenings of this film:

1996/1997 Spring Term (35mm)