The Man Who Wasn’t There

{4.5/5} “I was a ghost. I didn’t see anyone. No one saw me. I was the barber.”

Ed is a quiet, serious man who works as a barber in his brother-in-law Frank’s shop. He’s married to Doris, who works for Big Dave at a department store. Ed thinks Doris and Big Dave might be having an affair. He blackmails Big Dave into giving him $10 000 which he gives to a man he just met to invest in a dry cleaning business. But things don’t go according to plan — Big Dave finds out that it’s Ed who blackmailed him.

The Man Who Wasn’t There was released in 2001.

It’s mostly serious — the humour is even more low key than in Bottle Rocket. The scene where the cops inform Ed that his wife has been arrested is priceless.

Ed is a terrific character, played to perfection by Billy Bob Thornton.

I liked it quite a bit.

The music is melancholic. Carter Burwell (The Hudsucker Proxy) wrote the original music, plus there’s some Beethoven.

Billy Bob Thornton (The Astronaut Farmer) plays Ed and Frances McDormand (Moonrise Kingdom) plays Doris.

Michael Badalucco (O Brother, Where Art Thou?) plays Frank and James Gandolfini (Enough Said) plays Big Dave. Richard Jenkins (Jack Reacher) plays Ed’s friend Walter and Scarlett Johansson (Captain America: The Winter Soldier) plays Walter’s daughter Birdy. Tony Shalhoub (the TV show Monk) plays Freddy the lawyer.

The movie was directed by Joel and Ethan Coen, aka the Coen brothers (The Hudsucker Proxy).

This entry was posted on Monday, May 19th, 2014 at 8:10 pm and is filed under Reviews of movies. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

Leave a Reply