Where, O Where?

The fact that O Brother, Where Art Thou? did not win a 2000 Oscar for best screenplay based on previous material—the award went to Traffic—proves that members of the Academy don't read. I mean, come on! Joel and Ethan Coen collaborated with Homer, the Greek poet with some serious writing chops. Finding all the references to Homer's Odyssey was fun, but O Brother was simply the freshest, funniest and most unpredictable movie of the decade. The characters are hilarious—George Clooney preening in a hairnet, John Goodman licking his chops as Cyclops, Tim Blake Nelson cuddling a toad, John Turturro getting "loved up"—but it's the incredible score that sends O Brother into the rarefied air of a classic. There's the old traditional "I Am a Man of Constant Sorrow" that makes the Soggy Bottom Boys famous. Ralph Stanley and his edgy rendition of "O Death" show up at a KKK lynching. Then there's Alison Krauss, Emmylou Harris and Gillian Welch warbling "Didn't Leave Nobody But the Baby." You can see why Odysseus had to lash his sailors to the masts to escape the seductive sirens. Stay up late for a big-screen viewing of O Brother midnight Friday and Saturday at the Inwood Theatre, West Lovers Lane at Inwood. Tickets are $8.50. Call 214-764-9106 or visit landmarktheatres.com.
March 17, midnight


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