MOVIE REVIEW – In the night, shots in the distance. Two types surround a house by shooting. They are the Sisters brothers: Charlie and Eli, hit men, doing their job. Without mercy, they arrive quickly enough to their fins. There is more trouble than expected, but they are laughing. Eli (John C. Reilly), the Agnite, despite everything that happened when he saw the barn caught fire and someone god devoured by the flames gallops, to the height of torture. Horror vision. That Eli is sensitive to it, we reassure a little: at least there are still signs of humanity.
In the western The Sisters Brothers the world of Oregon, in 1851, is certainly barbaric, unjust, ruled by violence. That one that has always been at the heart of Jacques Audiard‘s cinema. But this time, new notes of earthiness and tenderness are added to the score. Patrick deWitt, director of the anticipation opting for an initiatory course with picaresque accents – on an impression to see a resurgence of the legendary duo of Don Quixote and Sancho Panza.
The Sisters Brothers, the surname for less dismaying, are rough cowboys who sometimes call themselves marquises, take great care to cut each other’s hair and bicker like children. The origin of these chicaneries is often a question of power, responsibility, relative to the place of each in the siblings. It is the youngest (Joaquin Phoenix), more impetuous, who is granted the role of leader. Why? Is he so strong? And Eli, he is weak?
An ingenious frame in The Sisters Brothers
Clarifications will come, relayed by other questions. The woof of the sisters is ingenious. Because the evolution of the brothers is based on their confrontation with another tandem, very original, does not parallel the path to California. Morris (Jake Gyllenhaal) is a literate and neat detective, he was a journal where he quoted Thoreau. He tracks Warm (Riz Ahmed), a “matte-skinned and eat-it-gold” researcher, but whose science and visionary spirit shine like the nuggets he covets. Morris must keep an eye on him while waiting for the sister brothers to land to eliminate him. But nothing goes as planned. In addition to its breaks ton, the story surprises with its twists, which relaunch the action to new stakes. Soon, the duets merge into a curious quartet, where everyone – the gentle, the violent, the dandy, the idealist – questions his own image.
There are as many personal reasons as fantasy in this western, which manages to get rid of the historical and political allegory, in all that was ferocious business mogul tycoon (via the figure of Commodore, the employer brothers), the gold rush, but also the philosophy of a utopia, the dream of an alternative society, pacified. On the neophyte use of the toothbrush, the discovery of the big city and its amenities, the film finds the candour of the tale. A magical tale – pure magic as the scene of the appearance of gold or in the river -, sometimes terrifying: the nightmares dominated by the monstrosity of the father of the Sisters. It even happens that these two extreme registers meet. When, for example, a legend has elapsed in Eli’s open mouth asleep. The following is amazing: in some elliptical plans, the film makes us one day feel and the Herculean robustness of the cowboy.
His most expensive film
The transgender salon boss, the emotional prostitute: the female characters, although ephemeral, are also fabulous. Both narrative and plastic, this adventure is rich, varied, but no childishness. It is paradoxically with this film, that it has never been shot, served by a prestigious skewer (all impeccable), that the filmmaker is perhaps the most intimate, the least spectacular. No big canyon, no ride. Small pieces of nature, feelings, characters with many facets, a myriad of moments apart. Like this one: the caress of the sun, a curtain that moves, lifted by a slight vent. Peace too can be a strong sensation.