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McCarthy is having none of this. In Bell, he shows us a representative of the Greatest Generation on his knees, overmatched, bowing out of the fight.


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Which brings us to Llewelyn Moss. Moss is a man of action. An independent man if there ever was one. He is the everyman we want to relate to, certainly the character we root for. Moss engages with the enemy. But Moss is compromised from the beginning. His entry into the story finds him as an opportunistic thief.

This is perhaps his last truly proactive decision.


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Everything from this point is reactionary, in relation to the chase. By choosing to participate in this game, he has forfeited his right to free will. And this in itself is an inversion of the classic notion of a hero, who by definition has agency. His pickup is disabled early—he never has a horse…Moss has no heroic moments, and spends much of the film wounded, weakened or disabled.

From Novel to Film: No Country for Old Men ed. by Lynnea Chapman King, Rick Wallach, and Jim Welsh

Viewers who found No Country to be a weird or unsatisfying film mostly griped about the ending. The last we see of Llewelyn Moss alive is walking past the motel pool with a six-pack when a woman catches his eye in the book she is a hitchhiker he befriends. Bell pulls up just as a group of drug-runners are fleeing, and Moss is already dead. This is not the ending we had hoped for.

In classic American hero storytelling, the good guy triumphs over the bad guy. At the very least, the hero dies in a heroic display of sacrifice e. What happens to Moss, in cinematic terms, is sacrilege. It strips away any opportunity to perceive him as a hero. So as main characters, we have a trifecta that includes the villain, a mystified coward and an opportunist who misses the leap and falls voiceless into the chasm. And to rub salt in, not only does Moss get himself killed, but in an inversion of the hero-as-protector construct, he takes his family down with him.

After Moss is gone, Chigurh calls on Carla Jean.

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Female Resistance in No Country. This seems a flawed argument, perhaps based more on screen time than attention to content. To the contrary, the women in No Country are the strongest characters. It is not enough to save Carla Jean, but as we see in No Country , living is not necessarily the same as winning.

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If Bell continues to live based on a pragmatic but unprincipled tack, Carla Jean is the opposite. She perishes but serves as the hero who finally wounds Chigurh in a way that counts. In No Country , characters are thrown into stark categories when considered through this lens. Ironically, but perhaps by design, Bell and Chigurh are the two characters that most believe in order, though very different notions of it. His despondency, however, is a result of him witnessing this code failing. He believes in a notion of social order that is disappearing and a religious order that is failing to materialize.

Yet the character with the most stringent code is Anton Chigurh.

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In an early scene, he asks an uncomfortable gas station attendant to call a coin toss, asking the man if he knows the date on the coin. In other words, the events of the world have conspired to bring them to this moment. And when the man wins the coin toss, Chigurh expands on his thesis:. Anything can be an instrument, Chigurh said. They pass from hand to hand.

People dont pay attention. And after that nothing is the same. What could that be an instrument of? You see the problem. To separate the act from the thing. As if the parts of the same moment in history might be interchangeable with the parts of some other moment. How could that be? This is the end. You can say things could have turned out differently. That they could have been some other way. But what does that mean?

They are not some other way.

15 Fascinating Facts About No Country for Old Men | Mental Floss

They are this way. Wells and Moss, though their ideologies are less clearly denoted, are conversely characters that live by the seat of their pants. So they checked to see if Mark Strong might be available. But when Bardem was able to clear his schedule, Strong was out of luck. Some confusion over what had transpired led several outlets to report that Strong had actually passed on the role of Chigurh—which was a rumor the actor wanted to clear up.

I would kneel on broken glass to work with them. And the wardrobe department had found this picture of a guy at a bar in West Texas in and it was that alarming haircut and actually that kind of wardrobe as well. And we looked at it and thought, well, he looks like a sociopath.

And Javier really enjoyed it as well. Bardem saw the haircut as almost its very own character. Chigurh's alligator boots were no off-the-rack pair of shoes. But then I read a couple of scenes and it all made sense! While a production can normally get away with mixing together a sugar-based fake blood on the cheap, shooting in the desert meant that the extras would have been covered in bugs while trying to play dead.

It is just there and you have to accept it. Without the violence in the film and setting up this kind of world, you wouldn't have the strength of the latter part of the film. It was brutal and we wanted to show it for what it was. Throughout the film, there are thunder and lightning storms. And it ended up being amazing. While they shot mainly in New Mexico, the production spent a few weeks in Marfa, Texas, to shoot some of the scenes that took place on the Mexican border. They ended up having to cancel shooting for the day.

His delivery, as usual, is pitch-perfect—and he apparently nailed it in one take. When asked by W Magazine how many takes it took, Jones simply answered: The final season of HBO's epic Game of Thrones is hovering on the horizon like a lazy sun and, at the end of the day, fans have only one real question about how it will end: Who will sit the Iron Throne? One of the major contenders is Daenerys of the thousand-and-one names, who not only has one of the most legitimate claims to the throne, but probably deserves it the most.

However, Game of Thrones has a habit of killing off main characters, particularly honorable ones, often in brutal and graphic ways. And unfortunately, there's already been some foreshadowing that writers will paint a target on Daenerys's back. What's a good fantasy story without a few prophecies hanging over people's heads?

While the books the show is based on have a few more than usual, the main prophecy of Game of Thrones is Melisandre's rants about "the prince that was promised," basically her faith's version of a messiah. Melisandre currently believes both Daenerys and Jon Snow somehow fulfill the prophecy, but her previous pick for the position died a grisly death, so maybe her endorsement isn't a good sign. A particular scene in season seven saw Tyrion advising Daenerys to name a successor before she travels north to help Jon.

She challenges him, "You want to know who sits on the Iron Throne after I'm dead. Tyrion is more than aware how mortal people are and wants to take precautions. He's seen enough monarchs die that he probably knows what warning signs to look for. More than once, Daenerys has been compared to her father, particularly in her more ruthless moments.

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Aerys was killed because of his insanity and arrogance. If Daenerys starts displaying more of his mental illness, she might follow in his footsteps to the grave. The fall and subsequent resurrection of the dragon Viserion was one of the biggest surprises of season seven.