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Crazy Heart: Thumbs Up or Thumbs Down?

Jeff Bridges and Maggie Gyllenhaal in Crazy Heart.

Karen’s Rating: Thumbs up.
A thoroughly enjoyable tour of a desperate life struggling to right itself. Jeff Bridges is brilliant and horrific in equal parts, taking us right along with him to the pit of alcoholic despair. He plays Bad Blake, a has-been country singer who is somehow simultaneously both bitter and fresh. He won the Golden Globe for best actor for this role and we can see why from the first moment the film opens with him stumbling out of his pickup truck to find his next gig is an a bowling alley. 

Robert Duvall is a fabulous surprise, in a small but brilliant role that almost steals the film. The scene of he and Bridges fishing together is just sweet beyond words. What any of us wouldn’t give for a friend like that. 

And rounding it all out is Maggie Gyllenhaal, who totally holds her own among this cast of luminaries, as the love interest that kicks Bad Blake’s life out of neutral. 

The story carries us along with small but real suprises at every turn, right up to the end, leaving us with a sense of deep sweetness.

Robert’s Rating: Thumbs up
Charming. How do you take an overdone story and make it seem fresh and new? It boggles my mind and warms my heart that, once in a while, a film is able to do just that. It’s what keeps me going to the cinema again and again. Great actors creating memorable and believable characters right before my very eyes. A talented writer/director adding the most human of touches to scenes that could have gone so predictably.

From start to finish, I was charmed by a washed up old cad with the heart of an artist. I witnessed the most unexpected of loves creep into a sleeping heart and awaken it to it’s purpose once again: to find that universal song within oneself and communicate it through one’s art to others.

Crazy Heart is that song you’ve always known, flowing through your soul as if for the first time.

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