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25 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Flawless
It's a rare occurrence when I sit through a film so utterly engrossed that I have no criticisms of it at all. But True Grit managed that feat. Which makes the plethora of negative reviews all the harder to understand.

Beautifully and atmospherically shot (with a slight fairy tale quality), it also boasts engaging performances from Jeff Bridges, a hard to...
Published on 10 Sept. 2011 by Mr. R Robertson

versus
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Definately Worth Watching
Well, I've seen both films several times and read the book, so here goes.
For me, westerns are like sci-fi films, they say more about the period in which they were made rather than the period that they are depicting. This is definitely 'grittier' than the John Wayne, but that alone does not make it a better film, just a different one. Jeff Bridges is excellent,...
Published 20 months ago by N. SKILTON


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25 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Flawless, 10 Sept. 2011
By 
This review is from: True Grit [DVD] (2010) (DVD)
It's a rare occurrence when I sit through a film so utterly engrossed that I have no criticisms of it at all. But True Grit managed that feat. Which makes the plethora of negative reviews all the harder to understand.

Beautifully and atmospherically shot (with a slight fairy tale quality), it also boasts engaging performances from Jeff Bridges, a hard to recognise Matt Damon and especially the young Hailee Steinfeld who is totally captivating. Most of the film's charm is due to her precocious self-confidence.

I've not seen the original, so can't compare, but I urge you to ignore the poor reviews here, see the film and make up your own mind.

And all this from someone who doesn't usually like the Coen Brothers!
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41 of 45 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars True Grit, 22 Jun. 2011
By 
T. Ross (Worthing, England) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: True Grit [DVD] (2010) (DVD)
Definitely the best film I've seen this year. Jeff Bridges and Matt Damon both play outstanding roles, with without doubt the star performance is by Hailee Steinfeld.
If, like me, you have fond memories of the original film with John Wayne and Kim Darby, and are worried that it might be just a pale re-make - don't be. It's a brilliantly scripted, directed and shot film that stands up in its own right.
It deserves a place on anyone's one-to-watch list.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hailee Steinfeld is True Grit, 20 Sept. 2013
By 
The Movie Guy "Movies from A to Z" (United States) - See all my reviews
(TOP 100 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: True Grit [DVD] (2010) (DVD)
The real star in this movie is clearly Haliee Steinfield. The characters portrayed are exaggerated and unrealistic, bordering on unbelievable and cartoon-ish. This adds to the enjoyment of the film. Haliee as Mattie has developed a level of knowledge and maturity that most people don't achieve in a lifetime, let alone in 14 years. There are certain characteristics of background people that make things interesting. For instance the undertaker tells Mattie on two separate occasions that it is okay for her to kiss a corpse, then later tells her it is okay if she wants to sleep in the coffin. Is the undertaker a borderline necrophiliac? The Texas Ranger LaBoeuf talks about kissing Mattie, then later spanks her. Is he boarding on pedophilia? Then there is the grandmother who snores. There is the traveling doctor wearing a bear's skin, including the head. He practices taking teeth out of dead people. It is these details that makes the movie interesting and quirky.

Rooster Cogburn, the man Mattie hires to pursue her father's killer, proudly served with the infamous William Quantrill, a group of Confederate raiders which history has portrayed in a negative light. Mattie is obsessed with revenge, but not to the point where it consumes her so she can not think.

The humor is dry:

Mattie: Why were they pursuing you?
Rooster: I robbed a high interest bank.
Mattie: That is stealing.
Rooster: Umm. That is the position they took in New Mexico.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Same plot as John Wayne version, very different effect. Watch both!, 4 May 2013
This review is from: True Grit [DVD] (2010) (DVD)
I suppose the simplest way to describe this movie would be to say it's a remake of the John Wayne version with all the sentimentality (not to say camp) drained out. Whether you think that makes it more enjoyable than the original depends greatly on what you're looking for in a movie.

John Wayne has been, beyond question, in some outright great movies, and he makes the earlier version highly watchable basically by just doing his John Wayne thing throughout. But his very best movies have got something more, and personally I think he often did quite a bit better than "True Grit." (Best of all in "The Man who shot Liberty Valance", where his John-Wayneness is shown to epic advantage by the terrific compare-and-contrast performance of James Stewart.)

Not even Jeff Bridges can really make up for not having John Wayne in a Western, but for my money (YMMV and I don't blame you) this is a better film in every other respect. In particular, Hailee Steinfeld does a great job of making the 14 year old avenging angel Mattie Ross actually believable (no mean feat when you stop to think about it.)

Comparisons are odious. Watch both! (If you watch the JW version first, you'll have the bonus of picking up some sly homages in the later version, too.)
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars this remake def has some 'TRUE GRIT', 23 Oct. 2011
This review is from: True Grit [DVD] (2010) (DVD)
Watched this terrific Coen Bros remake - back to back with Waynes original movie , its now my second fav Coen bros film ,and just behind my fav ,which is Fargo

Love both the True Grit films ,and this TRUE GRIT remake is fantastic ,it definitely does the original justice - and then some , its perfectly cast , and all the actors are magnificent in there roles ,it's funny in places , sad in places ,and has some great moments of suspence and action

Some of the most memorable lines from the original movie are back , but one line that was left out ,that I would like to have seen left in - was when Mattie says something about Cogburn definitely having True Grit / when Cogburn on horseback single handedly charges the four other cowboys near the end of the movie - just felt it was far too memorable a remark ,and shouldve been kept in ,and I felt that the final shootout scene was a bit more epic in this remake , there's also some great new scenes in this movie ,I also felt that the end few scenes brought more emotion out of me in this one - than they did in the original film , the end is changed slightly in places , but it works really well

A must see western , and one of the best classic movie remakes EVER - period
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Definately Worth Watching, 23 Jun. 2013
By 
This review is from: True Grit [DVD] (2010) (DVD)
Well, I've seen both films several times and read the book, so here goes.
For me, westerns are like sci-fi films, they say more about the period in which they were made rather than the period that they are depicting. This is definitely 'grittier' than the John Wayne, but that alone does not make it a better film, just a different one. Jeff Bridges is excellent, althogh it is true his accent is very difficult to understand some of the time, but perseverence brings rewards. Matt Damon is ok, Hailleee Steinfeld is very good (and should have been nominated for actress, not supporting actress, as she is clearly the lead charecter in this version, as well as the book).
As to it being more faithful to the book than the previous version, this is not true. It has the book's ending, which the John Wayne film does not, but there are truncated scenes, and missing ones (the part in the book where the deal is made at the start, for instance, is mostly missing), and some other scenes are altered (such as LeBoeuf going off before Maddy meets Chaney, which the John Wayne version has the same as the book). In all, however, it is a very good film, and so is the John Wayne one, neither are rubbish and it is churlish of anyone to say so.
The book is outstanding, however, and I would recommend it to anyone.
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19 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars timeless... one of the best films to come out of 2010, 21 July 2011
This review is from: True Grit [DVD] (2010) (DVD)
typically, westerns are not the genre of film that i would usually steer towards, but this film has changed my outlook and opinion completely. True Grit is essentialy central around the theme of redemption and companionship and shows that a decent film can arise from a fairly straightforward storyline. i initially watched this due to its universal reception and was not disappointed and upon the release to home media i purchased the blu ray format which made the experience even more fantastic.

specifically on amazon, there seemed to be an expression of dissappointment, with claims that the original was far superior. because of this, i saw the original, which was good, however i feel that this remake was in every way an improvement, especially in terms of Hailee Steinfeld who delivered a fantastic persomance for a debut role. I understand that the original was something to try and develop and improve on but without letting the streghth of it could my judgement i feel that this version deserves a solid 5 star rating.

this really is timeless and the Coen brothers have delivered once again a brilliant, enjoyable and memorable film, i would reccommend this to anyone (specifically on blu ray format), even if you're not a die hard fan of Western, please do not let the 3.5 star rating put you off, you won't be disappointed.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Digital Copy, 21 Mar. 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
As you may have encountered before the digital copy of the film has expired as of june 2012. I did finally get around this by trying clicking on another films title (that hadn't expired) and then inserting my disc in itunes to bring up True Grit and code entry. The usual routes its just says sorry expired. I don't think Paramount give out new codes just by asking (Warner Brothers has quite a good reputation for example) so was quite relieved by this. Just wanted to name and shame Amazon for listing this as a triple play when it clearly isn't anymore. There should be a way for consumers to see the expiry date online. Great Film of course.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars even paced, 14 Aug. 2011
This review is from: True Grit [DVD] (2010) (DVD)
This seemed typical Coen Brothers, the movie moved along at an even pace, rarely hitting a crescendo but offering enough to maintain interest. Overall, it was well acted, especially Hailee Steinfeld who gave a great performance. My main gripe was trying to understand Jeff Bridges who was incoherent throughout - maybe he was playing the role too well. It was a good film, but I was left feeling a little disappointed particularly as there was such a strong cast involved.
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4.0 out of 5 stars A Simple Story of Retribution Elevated to Classic Status by a Superb Child-Actor Performance, Excellent on Blu-ray, 8 Feb. 2012
I'm a big fan of most Coen brothers films, probably all except the rather pointless and ineffective 'The Ladykillers' have many good points with some ('Fargo', 'No Country for Old Men') bordering on brilliance, but after my Curate's Egg judgement of their last film, 'A Serious Man', I had started to wonder if the Coen brothers had lost their way.

And so, with some trepidation, I watched this latest effort on Blu-ray which afterwards, it has to be said, left me distinctly under whelmed. I was all prepared to put finger to keyboard and proclaim as much in my planned review but, aware of the potential trouble I could be letting myself in for (many had the same opinion of me about 'A Serious Man' but most seemed to praise 'True Grit' to the hilt) I decided to give it another chance, with an all too-soon repeat viewing; my opinion of the film has changed for the better......

I bought the 'Triple-Play' edition of the Blu-ray and can confidently say that the HD presentation is noticeably better than the DVD, especially as far as the picture is concerned. I'm still undecided about the advantages of having the film in 3 different formats, but the digital copy is a definite bonus for playback on my notebook computer when away from home.

'True Grit' has of course been made as a film before, the previous 1969 'version' (both are based on a novel of the same name) being most notable for starring John Wayne - however, I have never watched it properly as the snippets I saw never really attracted me. Mentioning the previous film is pertinent, as I have heard much argument from esteemed 'authorities' that despite the Coen brothers declaring their version to be based solely on the book (and stated as being 'written for the screen' by them), there are apparently occurrences in this newer production that reflect occurrences in the previous film but do not appear in the book - hmmm. Anyway, since I've never watched the earlier film I can't involve myself in such arguments....

The plot of the story is quite simple: In late 1800s America, a 14-year old girl named Mattie Ross takes it upon herself to get hired-help to capture the notorious villain Tom Chaney, who is responsible for having just killed her father. She is intent on seeing Chaney face the full force of the law, with his execution being the ideal result. She employs a slovenly, but apparently quite 'successful', US Marshal named Reuben J. 'Rooster' Cogburn who she plans to accompany on his journey to track down and apprehend Chaney. Initially apprehensive about the proposed task, Cogburn finally agrees to do the job but has his own plans about how to achieve it, which differ somewhat from what the young girl expects.....

I may not know much about the earlier film, but what I can say is that both films give star-billing to the actor playing the Cogburn character. Indeed, artwork of the 1969 version names the lead cast members but only features the face of Wayne; whereas the Coen version gives equal-billing to Jeff Bridges (Cogburn), Matt Damon (Texas Ranger 'La Boeuf', who is also in search of Chaney) and Josh Brolin (Chaney) but does add Mattie Ross to the picture at least.

Having watched this newer version, I can confidently say that BOTH formats are entirely misleading, as it is Mattie Ross who is the main character (the book cover only features a picture of her), because the story is essentially about her, her character provides the only narration to the film, she appears in every scene and in this Coen brothers version the actress who plays her is the undoubted star.

If I haven't been clear enough already, this film belongs to Hailee Steinfeld (and her character) and I find it quite staggering that her name doesn't even appear on the feature artwork. For me, Steinfeld dominates what we see and hear, even when the so-called 'stars' are also on-screen; the fact that this is her story only emphasises that point further. Her performance is quite superb, which surprised me even more when I discovered that at the time of filming she was actually the same age as her character - I really thought she was more 'mature' and was having to play someone younger. Yes, Bridges and Damon are very good (Brolin hardly features, making his star-billing all the more surprising) but I have now concluded that my second-viewing of the film changed my opinion of it for the better because I ignored the Hollywood-influenced 'aspect' (ie billing according to who got paid the most), and concentrated more on the Mattie character rather than being 'distracted' by the Cogburn character played by the 'star' actor. I appreciate that films have to entice viewers by the cast, but in this case it is to the detriment of the true star and in my opinion it adversely affects how you perceive the film as a whole.....

Now the film itself. The production values are of the normal excellent quality you would expect from the Coens, with authentic locations (the featured-town is a modified existing town rather than an outside studio set) and a plethora of period features. Despite much of the action occurring in the open country, I don't think that the cinematography (by the as usual, Coen-favourite, Roger Deakins) didn't feature as much of the clearly magnificent landscapes as it could have done. I obviously have different opinions about the filming, as a related production featurette on the disc makes great play of a slowly-expanding landscape shot for example, which to me was no where near as impressive as claimed....

Thankfully, what we do get are lots of obvious Coen 'influences' in the form of some quite marvellous verbal exchanges (unsurprisingly, all featuring the Mattie Ross character !) and quirks. For example, there is a delicious bartering 'argument' between Mattie and the trader who is yet to supply some horses to her now dead-father, and later on a short scene featuring a passing-by 'medicine-man' who is as weird as weird can be. There are also, of course, lots of scenes involving the antics of Cogburn - which are often amusing but occasionally felt slightly contrived, like the lightweight-filler 'biscuit shooting' competition between him and La Boeuf. Contrary to the comments of lots of other reviewers, I had no problem at all understanding the often slightly-garbled speech of Cogburn and actually felt that Bridges mastered very competently the variations in his likely comprehensibility which were, as far as I could see, dependent on his state of inebriation ! There are also several small parts involving some very well outlined 'unsavoury' characters, one of whom we regularly view from below, looking up into his disfigured/mouldy mouth.

As hinted at earlier, on Blu-ray this film looks very good. Occasionally I got an impression of over-exposure from the picture, but that was really to do with the extremely bright sunlight/surroundings rather than dodgy camera work. The level of detail in each shot is superb, with every hair or blade of dried grass being defined. Similarly, the mostly dialogue-driven soundtrack is rich and clear - but it does feature regular injections of guitar-based music courtesy of a score by Carter Burwell, which I have to say all too often remind me of the musical 'pluckings' which featured in the 'sheep-herder' film 'Brokeback Mountain' I think....

As usual, no Coen commentary but there are quite a few production featurettes, with only the one detailing the transformation of the modern town to reflect the 1800s set being of any interest.

The 'True Grit' story is quite simple, but is well told in this Coen brothers effort. The Blu-ray presentation is all one could expect from the HD format but, most importantly, once I ignored the misguided cast 'emphasis' and watched the film for a second time I appreciated it for what it really is: a heartfelt and supremely well acted study of how a young girl deals with her recent bereavement. Now I've understood the film that way I can download the digital copy to my notebook instead of preparing to sell the whole Blu-ray package on a well-known auction site, which was my plan after the first viewing !
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True Grit [Blu-ray] [2011] [Region Free]
True Grit [Blu-ray] [2011] [Region Free] by Ethan Coen (Blu-ray - 2011)
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