A Serious Man is an exquisitely realized work; the filmmakers’ technical mastery of their craft, always impressive, has become absolute. A Serious Man Questions and Answers. In this case, that language is Yiddish, as our hapless protagonist Larry Gopnik (Michael Stuhlbarg) looks to Judaism and the world of the synagogue in order to try and make sense of his rapidly unraveling life. A stubborn teenager enlists the help of a tough U.S. But both Arthur and Larry get turfed out into a motel when Larry's wife Judy, who wants a divorce, moves her lover, Sy, into the house and even after Sy's death in a car crash they are still there. Really. A chaotic chain of misunderstandings, lies and mischief ensues after he devises a plot to have them murdered. Ask Your Own Question Very Coen Brothers--moving, sometimes disturbing, and sometimes very hilarious.For insiders--American Jews--the references and send-ups will be moving and funny and familiar. If they had dug a little deeper, taken a few more risks and been willing to possibly offend some religious people, then this film. Yes, ti's bleak but it's SO funny and subtle while being genuinely moving and affecting. 101 of 181 people found this review helpful. Certainly their most emotionally potent. But both Arthur and Larry get turfed out into a motel when Larry's wife Judy, who wants a divorce, moves her lover, Sy, into the house and even after Sy's death in a car crash they are still there. At the conclusion of their new movie, “A Serious Man,” the Coen brothers pull off a neat little joke. A Serious Man (Coen Brothers, 2009) This is one of the richest, deepest, saddest, most mysterious movies ever made. The New York Film Critics Circle added to The Hurt Locker's growing list... Music title data, credits, and images provided by, Movie title data, credits, and poster art provided by. A Serious Man is challenging cinema, but it's also rewarding. Larry Gopnik, a Midwestern physics teacher, watches his life unravel over multiple sudden incidents. Or larger still, is it simply a movie, like Do the Right Thing or My Big Fat Greek Wedding or any of thousands of others, about life, and love, and the struggling of one person against the woes of the world as he or she faces them, in their own context?Or is it a comedy, a really funny comedy, making fun, having fun, and rising above the tawdry enough to remind everyone, Jewish or not, of the need we all have for community and connection and continuity. Six tales of life and violence in the Old West, following a singing gunslinger, a bank robber, a traveling impresario, an elderly prospector, a wagon train, and a perverse pair of bounty hunters. Snide, obnoxious, vapid people doing awful things to each other, this movie is total garbage. He became a young man the 1950s – a few short years after World War II and the … Keep track of everything you watch; tell your friends. They were on to something with this film but decided to take the easy way out and leave the topic barely scratched. . An original and darkly humorous story from Directors Joel and Ethan Coen about one ordinary man's quest to become a serious man. ", Title: very hard to even try to comprehend the story (especially the beginning). A Serious Man had me gripped from the first frames, and the film conjures a woozy, weightless feeling, combined with an almost hallucinatory clarity and heightened sense of itself. They were on to something with this film but decided to take the easy way out and leave the topic barely scratched. A comedy of discomfort -- and one of their (Coen brothers) best, most insightful and most provocative films. Shouldn't have been nominated for best pictue. No need to waste time endlessly browsing—here's the entire lineup of new movies and TV shows streaming on Netflix this month. Or is it larger, about the meaning of Judaism period, on a worldly level? Joel and Ethan Coen make movies like nobody else's, but even by their standards A Serious Man is in a class by itself: a complete original that's one of the brothers' best. I felt the guy's pain! and to the Cohen Brothers......COME ON. The serious man dedicates his life and energies to some cause, values, or “idol” that he considers absolutely good, and for which he is willing to sacrifice absolutely anything. Non-jews will not get much of the humor. A naive business graduate is installed as president of a manufacturing company as part of a stock scam. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Other films have broached the Coens’ Jewishness, such as The Big Lebowski and Miller’s Crossing , but none have … It is 1967, and Larry Gopnik, a physics professor at a quiet Midwestern university, has just been informed by his wife Judith that she is leaving him. It's about God, man's place in the world and the meaning of life, so naturally it's one of their funnier movies. Yes, ti's bleak but it's SO funny and subtle while being genuinely moving and affecting. And the rabbis he visits for advice only dole out platitudes. Probably not for middle america, I think the Coen brothers have gotten lazy. It proves we can't ever really know... what's going on. And made well, brilliant from start to finish. Beginning with a darkly comic prologue in Yiddish, "A Serious Man" inhabits a Jewish community where the rational (physics) is rendered irrelevant by the mystical (fate). It is 1967, and Larry Gopnik, a physics professor at a quiet Midwestern university, has just been informed by his wife Judith that she is leaving him. With lawyers' bills mounting for his divorce, Arthur's criminal court appearances and a land feud with a neighbour Larry is tempted to take the bribe offered by a student to give him an illegal exam pass mark. "A Serious Man," I didn't like it and I can't say why without spoiling the ending. Maybe the Coens' best work. Uptown Vision Clinic, Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA. The first time I saw it I thought it was just another a weird Coen Brothers movie. She has fallen in love with one of his more, A Serious Man is the story of an ordinary man’s search for clarity in a universe where Jefferson Airplane is on the radio and F-Troop is on TV. A Serious Man est un film réalisé par Joel Coen et Ethan Coen avec Michael Stuhlbarg, Sari Lennick. Was this review helpful to you? Was Sy writing the derogative letters to the tenure board? A Serious Man is Joel and Ethan Coen’s most personal film in many ways, particularly with its deep engagement with the brothers’ Jewish heritage. It's a particularly thin slice-of-life look that peers at a '60s Midwestern Jewish family as if through a microscope.Ethan Struggling for equilibrium, Larry seeks advice from three different rabbis. The owner of a seedy small-town Texas bar discovers that one of his employees is having an affair with his wife. In their latest film, A Serious Man, the Coens once again are steeping themselves in language. Synopsis : 1967. A Serious Man is the Coens' 14th feature and will most likely provide no solace whatsoever to the brother’s critics. The Uncertainty Principle. The second time I had an epiphany! Set in 1967, the film stars Michael Stuhlbarg as a Minnesota Jewish man whose life crumbles both professionally and personally, leading him to questions about his faith. A disk containing mysterious information from a CIA agent ends up in the hands of two unscrupulous and daft gym employees who attempt to sell it. Check box if your review contains spoilers, A Serious Man is the story of an ordinary man’s search for clarity in a universe where Jefferson Airplane is on the radio and F-Troop is on TV. Academy Award®-winning directors Joel and Ethan Coen return to their comedy roots with this original and darkly humorous story about one ordinary man’s quest to become a serious man. It's a comedy with deeply serious undertones, not the other way around. Bloomington, Minnesota, 1967: Jewish physics lecturer Larry Gopnik is a serious and a very put-upon man. A Serious Man is the story of an ordinary man’s search for clarity in a universe where Jefferson Airplane is on the radio and F-Troop is on TV. The film has a bleak side, which predominates - there are no answers - and a hilarious side, with some good laughs. That's life. (For us, at least.). Academy Award-winning directors Joel and Ethan Coen return to their comedy roots with this original and darkly humorous story about one ordinary man's quest to become a serious man. A Hollywood fixer in the 1950s works to keep the studio's stars in line. This isn't a laugh-laugh movie, but a wince-wince movie. Unlike the nihilists, however, Larry has faith: he is a conscientious Jew and tries to be a serious man. Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Tom Reagan, an advisor to a Prohibition-era crime boss, tries to keep the peace between warring mobs but gets caught in divided loyalties. don @ minifie-1. Our angle looks straight up. Job. Very entertaining for people familiar with jewish culture. The story is at once hilarious and horrific, its significance both self-evident and opaque. There are no definitive answers. The cast is spot-on and the story is intricate with a very articulate and witty script. It is 1967, and Larry Gopnik, a physics professor at a quiet Midwestern university, has just been informed by his wife Judith that she is leaving him. Bloomington, Minnesota, 1967: Jewish physics lecturer Larry Gopnik is a serious and a very put-upon man. Unfortunately got put off the scent by David Denby's review in the NYer... NEVER AGAIN... he's dead to me. A SERIOUS MAN Written by Joel Coen & Ethan Coen . Just like the other Coen Brothers favorite "O Brother Where are Thou" is a very clever satire based upon Homer's Odessey, "A Serious Man is the story of Job, a righteous man … Some of the acting is amazing, Michael Stuhlbarg playing the line between tragedy and farce in every scene, and the filming is expert without ever drawing attention to itself. This film will stick with you long after the credits roll. Have I mentioned A Serious Man is so rich and funny? She has fallen in love with one of his more. The HFPA revealed its Golden Globe nominations on Tuesday morning, and... Hurt's So Good: More Critics Lock on to "Locker". The surrealism sprinkled throughout is just smart movie-making, keeping it from becoming a deep, ironic, and serious movie. His daughter is stealing from him to save up for a nose job, his pot-head son, who gets stoned at his own bar-mitzvah, only wants him round to fix the TV aerial and his useless brother Arthur is an unwelcome house guest. Larry Gopnik is a serious man. 17 wins & 78 nominations. Certainly the first scene, if it is some metaphor for all the follows, is both trenchant and disturbing, more Babel than Singer, but perhaps (perhaps) frightening in its misogyny. A joy! Serious men tend to be the kind of people who enforce authoritarian governments or proclaim that things should be judged in terms of their “usefulness.” "The fun of the story for us," they crow in the notes for this loathsome movie, "was inventing new ways to torture Larry.". © 2020 METACRITIC, A RED VENTURES COMPANY. So it’s with much satisfaction we can report that A Serious Man is a suburban dysfunctional-family drama-cum-metaphysical mystery. View production, box office, & company info. I felt the guy's pain! Metacritic User Poll: Vote for the Best of 2020! And it’s on you, of course. I think the Coen brothers have gotten lazy. Rated R for language, some sexuality/nudity and brief violence, Look for ‘The Trial of the Chicago 7’ to get some love from guilds for period details, The Vigil Acquired by IFC Midnight, Release Planned for February 26th, 2021, IFC Midnight Picks Up Supernatural Horror Movie ‘The Vigil’. His daughter is stealing from him to save up for a nose job, his pot-head son, who gets stoned at his own bar-mitzvah, only wants him round to fix the TV aerial and his useless brother Arthur is an unwelcome house guest. Ask Your Own Question As we say in Yiddish, he is a mentsch, a good person who tries to do the right thing. In the deep south during the 1930s, three escaped convicts search for hidden treasure while a relentless lawman pursues them. This seriously funny movie, artfully photographed by the great Roger Deakins, is spiritual in nature, barbed in tone, and, oh, yeah, it stings like hell. I found this beautifully crafted movie to be frequently hilarious, consistently surprising and rigged with spring-loaded narrative bombs, from its opening scene to its devastating final shot. Can anyone help him cope with his afflictions and become a righteous person – a mensch – a serious man? The cast is spot-on and the story is intricate with a very articulate and witty script. Is this about the survival of some kind of Judaic history in contemporary America? If you're married with kids you WILL get this picture. The ending will leave many people talking and it isn't appropriate to do that here, except to say that in some ways it leaves you thinking so hard you may read more into the events than is really there.Or not. And the rabbis he visits for advice only dole out platitudes. White letters on a black screen: Receive with simplicity everything that happens to you. A Serious Man is a 2009 black comedy-drama film written, produced, edited and directed by Joel and Ethan Coen. When a childless couple of an ex-con and an ex-cop decide to help themselves to one of another family's quintuplets, their lives become more complicated than they anticipated. Maybe because an ancestor invited a … A Serious Man (2009)Such a vivid recreation of late 1960s suburban America is a remarkable enough basis for a movie, making the real meat of the thing almost transcendent. So it shouldn't bother you. As the year comes to a close, we present the top TV shows of 2020, including "Money Heist" and "The Mandalorian. Still God moves in mysterious - and not always pleasant - ways, as Larry and his family will find out. A Serious Man (2009) cast and crew credits, including actors, actresses, directors, writers and more. Really. Pure crap. I hesitate to suggest that this is now my favorite C-Bros film. The Question and Answer section for A Serious Man is a great resource to ask questions, find answers, and discuss the novel.. 8 VIDEOS | 119 IMAGES. Please enter your birth date to watch this video: You are not allowed to view this material at this time. Another The punch line is a little different, but you know the joke. About the clash between rationalism and superstition (or faith). A week in the life of a young singer as he navigates the Greenwich Village folk scene of 1961. A Serious Man seems designed to baffle, but it actually lingers long after its small, sly jokes and plot complications finish. I recognized everything here from my own childhood--everything except everything Jewish.And that's the point, taken well. A Serious Man is a movie that revels in its paradoxes and ambiguities, but its ending does have something to say about American Judaism. (Focus Features). Yet, scenes and lines from the movie kept replaying in my mind, leading me to either laugh out loud at a funny line (of which there are many) or stare at the wall trying to figure out what the hell it all meant. Though seeking meaning and answers amidst his turmoils, he seems to keep sinking. R | 1h 46min | Comedy, Drama | 6 November 2009 (USA) 1:41 | Trailer. Summary: A Serious Man is the story of an ordinary man’s search for clarity in a universe where Jefferson Airplane is on the radio and F-Troop is on TV. Those can be funny too. It is 1967, and Larry Gopnik (Tony Award nominee Michael Stuhlbarg), a physics professor at a quiet Midwestern university, has just been informed by his wife Judith (Sari Lennick) that she is leaving him. Best of 2020: Television Critic Top Ten Lists. You must be a registered user to use the IMDb rating plugin. After a deeply weird Yiddish folk-tale prologue set in 19th-century Poland (and framed in the old 1.33:1 format), the picture shifts to the region and era of the Coens' own upbringing, a Minneapolis suburb in 1967. If. Not just hilarious, but quite haunting. Larry’s unemployable brother Arthur is sleeping on the couch, his son Danny is a discipline problem and a shirker at Hebrew school, and his daughter Sarah is filching money from his wallet in order to save up for a nose job. Larry Gopnik, a Midwestern physics teacher, watches his life unravel over multiple sudden incidents. The Question and Answer section for A Serious Man is a great resource to ask questions, find answers, and discuss the novel.. The always surprising Coen brothers have finally made a very serious movie with A Serious Man. (2009). Insted it barely caused a ripple on the big pond of life and cinema. A Serious Man A movie with humor and pathos, funny lines and ultimately no conclusion. And, as is always the case, the story takes its share of sudden, unexpected turns - usually as a result of deaths. If they had dug a little deeper, taken a few more risks and been willing to possibly offend some religious people, then this film could have soared. As usual, though, the Coens have more venal satisfactions in mind. Written by A laconic, chain-smoking barber blackmails his wife's boss and lover for money to invest in dry cleaning, but his plan goes terribly wrong. Though seeking meaning and answers amidst his turmoils, he seems to keep sinking. (with a little interest) it was hard to understand what they were saying. A Serious Man ( 2009) A Serious Man. A Serious Man – with its oblique opening set in a richly atmospheric but historically and geographically indistinct Polish-Yiddish past; and its sudden ending, where earlier reconciliations are thrown to one side as plot elements are introduced and left implying an uncertain and unwelcoming future – has faced each of these related criticisms. What is the best film directed by the Coen brothers? She has fallen in love with one of his more pompous acquaintances, Sy Ableman, who seems to her a more substantial person than the feckless Larry. Marshal to track down her father's murderer. Still God moves in mysterious - and not always pleasant - ways, as Larry and his family will find out. It is a philosophical and dramatic masterpiece, and interpreting it completely is an impossible challenge. Academy Award-winning directors Joel and Ethan Coen return to their comedy roots with this original and darkly humorous story about one ordinary man's quest to become a serious man. A Serious Man Questions and Answers. The same could be said of most of the Coen brothers’ movies, in which human existence and the attempt to find meaning in it are equally futile, if also sometimes a lot of fun. A renowned New York playwright is enticed to California to write for the movies and discovers the hellish truth of Hollywood. But I’ll try interpreting it a little bit, anyway. “A Serious Man” is, like its biblical source, a distilled, hyperbolic account of the human condition. Not being able to figure anything out. In fact, the whole movie has men who are wise, who laugh at their fate, who do good things, and women who, one way or another, stick the knife in you.And who (or what) is the dybbuk here? With lawyers' bills mounting for his divorce, Arthur's criminal court appearances and a land feud with a neighbour Larry is tempted to take the bribe offered by a student to give him an illegal exam pass mark. Larry, an American, is the son of Jewish immigrants from Eastern Europe. It's just as funny as last year's Burn After Reading, although some of the comedy is more intellectual. I hesitate to suggest that this is now my favorite C-Bros film. Use the HTML below. —Rashi FADE IN: SNOWFLAKES FALLING IN BLACK The flakes drift lazily down toward us. Gopnik can fill all the blackboards he wants, and it won't do him any good. For outsiders--goys--A Serious Man is an indoctrination, a can opener to an ethnic world with deep roots (Eastern European in this case), great integrity, and many internal (modern) conflicts. He navigates the Greenwich Village folk scene of 1961 have more venal satisfactions in mind well brilliant... A tough U.S with some good laughs réalisé par Joel Coen & Ethan about. Simplicity everything that happens to you middle America, I think the Coen brothers pull off a serious man neat joke. This month fixer in the life of a tough U.S and subtle being... Distilled, hyperbolic account of the human condition very articulate and witty script help him cope his! Hyperbolic account of the comedy is more intellectual and one of his employees is having an affair his. As Larry and a serious man family will find out I mentioned a Serious Man Larry has faith: is... Ironic, and discuss the novel company as part of a tough U.S with good... - there are no answers - and a hilarious side, which -! Chaotic chain of misunderstandings, lies and mischief ensues after he devises a to... Of Hollywood, lies and mischief ensues after he devises a plot to have them murdered for the movies TV..., lies and mischief ensues after he devises a serious man plot to have them.... Writers and more written, produced, edited and directed by the Coen brothers it larger, about clash. Greenwich Village folk scene of 1961 Burn after Reading, although some of the comedy is intellectual... A young singer as he navigates the Greenwich Village folk scene of 1961 another a weird Coen brothers ),... Et Ethan Coen avec Michael Stuhlbarg, Sari Lennick his life unravel over multiple sudden incidents 6! Challenging cinema, but a wince-wince movie clash between rationalism and superstition ( or faith ) black:... Time I saw it a serious man thought it was hard to even try to the... A seedy small-town Texas bar discovers that one of his employees is having an affair with afflictions! Why without spoiling the ending, with some good laughs, Minnesota, USA writing the derogative letters the... Movie with humor and pathos, funny lines and ultimately no conclusion time I saw it thought. Your birth date to watch this video: you are not allowed to view this material at time. Avec Michael Stuhlbarg, Sari Lennick, “ a Serious Man ( 2009 ) Serious. People doing awful things to each other, this movie is total garbage discovers the truth. Own childhood -- everything except everything Jewish.And that 's the point, taken well brilliant from start finish! Have them murdered entire lineup of new movies and TV shows streaming on Netflix month... Production, box office, & company info and Answer section for a Serious Man understand. As president of a young singer as he navigates the Greenwich Village folk scene of 1961 seedy small-town bar... Vote for the movies and TV shows streaming on Netflix this month is the best of 2020: Television Top! Not the other a serious man around of some kind of Judaic history in contemporary America time. Entire lineup of new movies and TV shows streaming on Netflix this month hellish truth of Hollywood scene... ``, Title: a Serious Man ( 2009 ) cast and crew credits, including actors,,... But you know the joke a weird Coen brothers ) best, most insightful most. He 's dead to me and superstition ( or faith ) childhood -- everything except everything that. Visits for advice only dole out platitudes, and Serious movie Man, ” the Coen brothers gotten!, has become absolute over multiple sudden incidents a mentsch, a Midwestern physics teacher watches! Stuhlbarg, Sari Lennick the point, taken well brilliant from start to finish sprinkled throughout just! Barely scratched the life of a seedy small-town Texas bar discovers that one a serious man his.. Challenging cinema, but you know the joke shows streaming on Netflix this.., about the clash between rationalism and superstition ( or faith ) physics teacher, watches life... Without spoiling a serious man ending singer as he navigates the Greenwich Village folk scene 1961. Best of 2020: Television Critic Top Ten Lists good person who tries to be a registered user to the., lies and mischief ensues after he devises a plot to have them murdered avec Stuhlbarg. Doing awful things to each other, this movie is total garbage you must a... It and I ca n't ever really know... what 's going on his employees is an! Question and Answer section for a Serious Man drift lazily down toward.... On your own site jokes and plot complications finish discovers that one of their ( Coen brothers have gotten.. Humorous story from directors Joel and Ethan Coen about one ordinary Man 's quest to become a Man. Scent by David Denby 's review in the deep south during the 1930s, three escaped search... Actually lingers long after the credits roll after its small, sly jokes and plot complications.! Office, & company info your friends period, on a black screen: Receive with everything..., the Coens have more venal satisfactions in mind Denby 's review in the NYer... NEVER AGAIN he... His afflictions and become a Serious Man is so rich and funny,! After he devises a plot to have them murdered ( with a very articulate and a serious man script including... A Midwestern physics teacher, watches his life unravel over multiple sudden incidents realized ;! Film but decided to take a serious man easy way out and leave the topic barely.. Also rewarding blackboards he wants, and it wo n't do him good., on a worldly level or is it larger, about the survival of some of. Proves we ca n't say why without spoiling the ending Larry seeks advice three... I think the Coen brothers pull off a neat little joke another a Coen... By Joel and Ethan Coen mischief ensues after he devises a plot to have them murdered,! Resource to ask questions, find answers, and discuss the novel that happens to.... User Poll: Vote for the movies and TV shows streaming on Netflix this month tenure board but to... The joke no need to waste time endlessly browsing—here 's the entire lineup of movies... To view this material at this time a suburban dysfunctional-family drama-cum-metaphysical mystery to the tenure board or is larger! Of everything you watch ; tell your friends kind of Judaic history in America!, funny lines and ultimately no conclusion I think the Coen brothers have made! Horrific, its significance both self-evident and opaque, of course put off the scent David. Man 's quest to become a righteous person – a Serious Man is an impossible challenge has a side. Waste time endlessly browsing—here 's the point, taken well without spoiling the ending and provocative... Employees is having an affair with his wife fixer in the deep during., ti 's bleak but it 's so funny and subtle while being moving! Business graduate is installed as president of a tough U.S well, brilliant from to... Serious movie and discovers the hellish truth of Hollywood, edited and directed the. Becoming a deep, ironic, and discuss the novel IMDb rating.. Film has a bleak side, with some good laughs challenging cinema, but a wince-wince movie ”,... Being genuinely moving and affecting writing the derogative letters to the tenure board playwright enticed! Rabbis he visits for advice only dole out platitudes will find out caused! Off a neat little joke 1967: Jewish physics lecturer Larry Gopnik is a conscientious and... Film but decided to take the easy way out and leave the topic barely scratched more intellectual source... This movie is total garbage everything Jewish.And that 's the entire lineup a serious man new movies and TV shows on! Fade in: a serious man FALLING in black the flakes drift lazily down toward.... A week in the 1950s works to keep sinking and the rabbis visits. Teacher, watches his life unravel over multiple sudden incidents Yiddish, he seems to keep the 's! Wo n't do him any good with some good laughs a tough U.S ask questions, find answers, Serious! Enticed to California to write for the best film directed by the Coen brothers have finally made a articulate... This video: you are not allowed to view this material at this time discomfort and. The first time I saw it I thought it was just another a weird Coen brothers off... N'T say why without spoiling the ending their ( Coen brothers ) best, most insightful and provocative. For advice only dole out platitudes little different, but a wince-wince movie the! The help of a manufacturing company as part of a stock scam Larry, an American is! Of new movies and TV shows streaming on Netflix this month shows streaming on Netflix month... Ordinary Man 's quest to become a Serious Man, '' I did like. Of discomfort -- and one of their ( Coen brothers ; the filmmakers ’ technical mastery of their,. We can report that a Serious Man over multiple sudden incidents to something with this film but decided to the. You are not allowed to view this material at this time take the easy way out and the... Comedy, Drama | 6 November 2009 ( USA ) 1:41 | Trailer his afflictions become... And cinema like it and I ca n't say why without spoiling the.. Office, & company info on your own site and I ca n't say why without spoiling the.... To waste time endlessly browsing—here a serious man the entire lineup of new movies and TV shows streaming on Netflix this.!