Monday, 10 February 2014

The Big Lebowski Review: Dude, Dudeness, Duder or El Duderino

Review of The Big Lebowski

Directors: Joel Coen, Ethan Coen

UK Release Date: 1st May 1998

Running Time: 117 minutes

Starring: Jeff Bridges, John Goodman, Steve Buscemi, Julianne Moore, Philip Seymour Hoffman, John Turturrow

"The Big Lebowski" is one film that you will have to watch again.  This comedy crime movie is certainly one that is difficult to get your head around with a first time viewing but is very entertaining nonetheless.  At the time the film received relatively positive reviews but has now become a cult classic and it is no wonder why. Directed by the Coen Brothers and starring Jeff Bridges and John Goodman in character roles that suit them down to the ground, there is not much that "The Big Lebowski" has wrong with it.  
The Dude, Donny and Walter played by Jeff Bridges, Steve Buscemi and John Goodman respectively
The Dude, Donny and Walter in The Big Lebowski
'The Dude' (Bridges) is a lazy stoned bowler and shares the same name as Jeff Lebowski, a multimillionaire. He soon gets caught up in a number of kidnappings, mishaps and fights as he does his best to keep living his usual life while trying to make some money off his situation.  With help from Walter (Goodman) the film provides plenty of odd scenes that will have you scratching your head.

The characters in "The Big Lebowski" are great. Bridges and Goodman suit their characters perfectly and could actually be them.  A great on screen chemistry between them really makes it a pleasure to watch.  The two are backed up by Donny (Steve Buscemi) who although does not have a major role does provide an alternative edge of comedy.  There are some classic scenes featuring Jesus (John Turturrow) which will have you laughing a lot.  This character and Turturrow's acting really does add a lot to the film.

John Turturrow as Jesus in the Big Lebowski
John Turturrow provides great comedy in The Big Lebowski
One thing that makes this film a great watch is the dialect used. There were two things in this regard that stood out; quirky one-liners and intelligent conversation.  The film has both.  One of the reasons that is has become so popular is that it is easily quotable. One of Goodman's lines repeats throughout - 'Shut the **** up, Donny.'  He must say it at least 5 times throughout and by the last time you even start saying it with him.  It really works well.  Not only that, "The Big Lebowski" also features great scenes of intense and clever dialect and conversations which are engage-able for the audience. It really is a spectacle for to see both of these work in one film.  

The Coen Brothers also deliver fanatstic dream sequences that are tantalising to watch. Hypnotic, beautiful and completely wacky scenes both add to the aestetics of the film and also the confusion.  "The Big Lebowski" is a good film to watch but you will finish watching it the first time thinking, 'What was that?'  However, just writing this review and thinking about the film it is becoming clear as to why it is a fan favourite and also why it has become a cult classic.  We recommend that you watch "The Big Lebowski" and advise that you watch it many times afterwards as well. 

M+F Rating: 7/10

Reviewed by M+F Reviews.

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