hold still.

As I mentioned yesterday, today the parentals and I embarked on a promise-filled adventure that ultimately served up one resounding expectation-surpassing success and one overall disappointment.

The success? The massively good new Coen Brothers movie, just possibly the most satisfying and unaffected film they've done yet, which I'm just so happy to be able to say.

I'd need to see it again to have a more unshakable opinion, and I will, but to even be able to say that it's in the same class as Blood Simple signifies a completely unexpected return to sublimity (and movies about Texas) for those two.

What this film does, in fact, is to interweave Blood Simple's strongest characteristics (mastery of noir-style genre conventions and Hitchcockian suspense) with funnier humor, heavier pessimism, and Javier Bardem. And Tommy Lee Jones. And a host of supporting-role Texans that made me feel like I ain't skipped the True South on this visit at all. The Coens should obviously just keep making movies about Texas until they make a bad one.

Speaking of Blood Simple, the Director's Cut was just released on DVD, and I loved Roger Ebert's quote about it: "If you are squeamish, here is the film to make you squeam."


Oh right, the disappointment. Zinc Bistro. Almost great, but yeah, too many little things wrong with each dish, like no one really cared. Like whoever was cooking was cooking "someone else's food". Dad suspects that the chef wasn't in the building, and that would certainly explain it. Out back in the parking lot, maybe, running a game of three-card Monte.

Whatever, yeah, the food: not exactly bad at all, just very obviously not what it could have been. Great recipes, slightly haphazard execution. I give it 7 lukewarm poached eggs out of a possible 10. Maybe even subtract an egg for Scottsdale's general gross plasticity and the ghastly, inappropriate Eurolounge music that I can't believe anyone working or eating there enjoys.


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