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December 26th, 2010

Movie Review - True Grit

True Grit

Starring: Jeff Bridges, Hailee Steinfeld, Matt Damon, Josh Brolin, Barry Pepper, and more.

Directed & written by: Joel & Ethan Coen

Premise: After her father is killed, Mattie Ross comes to Fort Smith to collect her father's body. Seeing that no one is pursuing the murderer to bring him to justice, she decides to take matters into her own hands and hires a local marshal to go after him.

Review: It's been forever since I saw the original True Grit with John Wayne so I can't make any valid comparisons with the original, so I won't. I can only say what I felt about this film on its own.

Hailee Steinfeld was spectacular! Prim, proper, with a core of iron yet still showing a vulnerability on occasion that was great to behold. She fired her dialogue with just the right amount of confidence and sharpness that made her such a fearsome force to deal with. A guided missile on a mission! One that would not be stopped.

Jeff Bridges was a total hoot as Rooster Cogburn. He was gritty, quirky, funny, rough and watching him deal with Mattie and also LeBoeuf was a hoot. Matt Damon as the Texas Ranger was prissy and stiff and a wonderful foil to clash with Rooster. Like two sides of the same coin, one shiny, one scarred both stubborn.

Beautiful cinematography. You truly felt these people were out in the middle of nowhere. Everything was desolate. The multiple layers of desolation for the landscape, the people, and their cause, it made a very nice image both visually and subliminally.

The film was a lot of fun especially in the beginning. Then as things move along it grew grimmer as they knuckle down to the task at hand. All actions have consequences. And when you push past where you should, be prepared to pay the price.

In someways that was the scariest thing about the film. Mattie Ross grew up in many ways though she was already mature beyond her years during this adventure. But the biggest lesson learned and one she wore like a badge of honor - was that all actions have consequences. There is always a price to pay and you have to want it bad enough and pay it. She did and I can't say she was ever sorry for doing it though at the time she felt some regret but there was way to take it back. It was a very poignant thing watching her come to realize the price she would pay for that one moment of triumph. A price she'd never expected and could do nothing about since it was too late. But eventually resolved there was no point crying over spilled milk. What was done was done. A lesson you got the feeling her two companions already knew quite intimately themselves.

And while you'll hold it together throughout, it's the ending years later that gets you. It's where you see just how much that short period of time made a difference in a young girls life. (Tearing up just thinking about it. I am a sucker! Heh)

Rating: 4.25 out of 5
Gloria Oliver
Unveiling the Fantastic
www.gloriaoliver.com

Novels


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The muscles in my right arm jerked from tension as I tried to make it move and it resisted. A shrill scream inside my head insisted I didn't want to do this. That if I did, there'd be no way to take it back. "I...I'm afraid."



THE PRICE OF MERCY

(2011) Young Adult – Fantasy

Which is worse…the monster without or within?


Excerpt:

Home—family—the two things he would never have, the two things forever denied him…because of her.

Anger welled inside him, the heat of it suffusing him to the core, gurgling with seething emotions the total opposite of the coolness splashing down from the fountain nearby. Before he realized what he was doing, Jarrin stepped inside the gazebo.




CROSS-EYED DRAGON TROUBLES
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She frowned, not understanding what he meant. “Punishment?”

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WILLING SACRIFICE
(2008) Young Adult – Fantasy
“To save the world she must DIE! Or must she?”

Excerpt:

Panic and fear filled with utter helplessness made her dizzy. She knew what would be done with her, she knew what they planned. But there was nothing she could do to stop any of it.

Sharp gasps echoed in her ears as she felt the room’s cold air caress the Eye.

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“The Last Samurai meets Pirates of the Caribbean”

Excerpt:

Laying the blade on the floor before him, Toshi parted his kimono until his stomach lay exposed. He tucked his sleeves beneath his legs to hold him upright if he should falter. Ignoring Asano, he took up the blade. His shoulder flared with pain and he tried not to flinch, as he grabbed the blade with both hands. He turned the wakizashi until its sharp point was aimed at his belly, the residence of his soul.



VASSAL OF EL
(2004) Adult/YA – Fantasy Mystery
“He tried to forget his past, but his past wouldn’t forget him”

Excerpt:

Torren took a step back a sudden shudder racking through him. It was as if he’d never left, as if the boy he’d been would be coming back-though the one who’d loved this room and all these things was long, long dead. That boy died when he’d watched his father’s blood pour forth from his mouth, the end of a sword protruding from his abdomen. That boy died when he survived while everyone else lay dead.

Info, sample chapters, and free reads at www.gloriaoliver.com

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