The debut of the Coen brothers, the sizzling film noir Blood Simple, was officially released back in January of 1985, and 2010 marks the 25th anniversary of the stunning film that put them on the map. I am re-watching and studying Blood Simple this week in film class, and you can be sure to expect a review by the end of the week. I must say that I am much more impressed than I was the first time around, even to the point where I would call it one of their three best films.
My relationship with the Coens has had lots of ups and downs. I wasn't a fan of two of their early outlandish comedies -- Raising Arizona and The Big Lebowski -- but I adore their most recent ones: Burn After Reading and A Serious Man. I think it is the dark tone of the latter two that I appreciate the most. When it comes right down to it, I think that dark films are the true calling of this filmmaking duo, and they have crafted multiple masterworks that will be studied for years and years to come. Blood Simple, which began making festival rounds all the way back in 1984, is certainly one of those films.
The Coen's next project, currently in pre-production, is True Grit, a remake of the 1969 John Wayne film for which he won an Oscar. So far, Matt Damon, Jeff Bridges, and and Josh Brolin have all signed on to star in the film.
Below you will find Ebert & Roeper's review of the film's director's cut, which came out fifteen years after its initial release.