Kris Tapley over at Incontention has dropped a bomb, calling The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford "the most accomplished work of moving imagery committed to film in nearly a decade." Tapley's no hack either. In fact there probably isn't another critic I agree with on a more consistent basis than him. Inland Empire, The Fountain and Children of Men were top 3 films last year, and Last Days took the top spot the year before that, so he knows his stuff. Here's a short excerpt:
"In 1983, author Ron Hansen crafted a novel that ought to be considered mandatory reading for anyone considering him or herself attracted to the western as a genre and as a conveyor of essential truth. A Shakespearean account of betrayal in the old west, Hansen’s broad sketches revealed deep and vibrant characters that transcended the nickel-book mythology into which they inevitably found themselves woven. Twenty-four years later, filmmaker Andrew Dominik has accomplished a visual telling of that story which is as close to cinematic perfection as you could hope to imagine. At the risk of sensationalism, I would call “The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford” the most accomplished work of moving imagery committed to film in nearly a decade. It is a staggering piece of true cinematic art."
Read the full review here