This black comedy is funny in many respects, but falters with some of its storytelling elements. (The Coen Brothers wrote and directed the movie too.) The all-star cast does elevate the movie higher than it probably has any right to be, but the movie is still better than many of the comedies that came out last year. Yet, there’s something mission from this movie…
The story involves a bunch of people wanting to get a hold of a compact disk, which they believe contains highly sensitive CIA information. This all leads to some violence, sex, and confusion. (All the good stuff)
With multiple characters all interacting on different levels, I think the Coen brothers did an fair job keeping it together without it getting confusing. Most of the acting is simply wonderful, if slightly over the top.
With the exception of Brad Pitt, an actor I’ve come to respect, they all do a bang-up job with the sometimes unsteady script. I don’t think it is so much Pitt’s fault, I just find the character really annoying. Tilda Swinton and Clooney are great together. And I have to give Frances McDormand on showing an aging woman that’s desperate for love and a face-lift.
Like No Country for Old Men, Burn doesn’t exactly know how to end its story, so the film just stops and two characters in an office explain the ending to us through a conversation. This is the biggest problem I have with the movie, while JK Simmons is hilarious in the last scene, I wanted more out of this black comedy and I didn’t get it. The fact JK’s character even states that the ending doesn’t make sense and it feels complete should tell you how I feel about the movie.
Spoilers! Here are the last lines from the movie.
CIA Superior: What did we learn, Palmer? CIA Officer: I don't know, sir. CIA Superior: I don't fuckin' know either. I guess we learned not to do it again. CIA Officer: Yes, sir. CIA Superior: I'm fucked if I know what we did. CIA Officer: Yes, sir, it's, uh, hard to say
Burn is not nearly as compelling as No Country, and it is not supposed to be, I just expected something better than what I got.
Everyone in the theater looked at these two with such confusion because they were the only ones that laughed at all the jokes in the Meet the Spartans screening.