film review: Crazy Heart (2009)


Crazy Heart poster Jeff BridgesSaw this in the beautiful Light House cinema, an 4 screen arthouse cinema in Smithfield.

I wasn’t particularly expecting to like this film. I don’t really like country music and it sounded like a story I’ve heard before. I like to see new stuff, or at least old stuff taken in a new direction or seen in a new light. Crazy Heart didn’t really sound like there was anything new about it….

…and there isn’t. But despite that I enjoyed it. More than that, I actually liked it. Ok, it did really remind me of last year’s The Wrestler… and that in turn reminded of the documentary Anvil! The Story of Anvil… but still I didn’t mind. This is a good film.

The question everyone is asking though is “Does Jeff Bridges deserve the Oscar?” He certainly puts on a very good performance. I’m not a huge fan of Bridges, which is not to say that I don’t like him, I just haven’t seen that many of his films. Tideland is the only film I remember him in in the last 20 years – yes that’s right, I haven’t seen The Big Lebowski. He was good in Tideland alright but it doesn’t exactly make you develop a strong fondness for him.

Personally I’m not sure if he does deserve the award. I’m sure he’s going to get it… but having seen all the other performances now, I’m just not sure. I think Colin Firth is better in A Single Man. I also think Jeremy Renner is better in The Hurt Locker… well I’m not entirely sure about that one but he’s definitely as good. Either way it’s moot. He’s definitely gonna get it. When you’re a good guy and you’ve been nominated 4 times already the award threshold goes down a little for you. Actually let me be fair – he does deserve it in a general sense, I just don’t know if he deserves it for this role.

For what it’s worth, Crazy Heart is worth a watch quite apart from Jeff Bridges. It’s a good classic story well told and there’s great music in it. And like I said, I don’t even like country music. Then again these days when I think about country music I think of like… Taylor Swift. I’m sure there are those who would say that doesn’t count. The songs in Crazy Heart are the real thing, I’ll be very surprised if The Weary Kind doesn’t win the Best Song Oscar. It’s actually not my favourite song from the film but it is excellent.

I kind of feel a bit weird recommending that people go see a film that’s so unoriginal. Honestly, you’ve heard this story a hundred times. There really is nothing new in it, but I feel I’d be doing a disservice if I didn’t. I’ll put it this way. If you liked The Wrestler or if you like country music then go see this film.



  1. comment-avatar
    BrianFebruary 28, 2010 - 11:59 pm

    The story may not be original, but it is very genuine, and i think that is what makes it so enjoyable.

    By the way, I’ve lived all my life in Texas and I hate country music, but this music really isn’t country music, thankfully.

  2. comment-avatar
    Nicola-tMarch 1, 2010 - 9:20 am

    You’re right Brian, it’s not a new story but it is a truthful one – I should have highlighted that when I mentioned the Anvil documentary. Have you seen it by the way? It’s good stuff.

    I’m interested to hear that about country music. I had always been under the impression that the Taylor Swift / Carrie Underwood kind of thing was the new face of country music today and that the kind of music in Crazy Heart was the old style real country. But I really have no idea, it’s not a genre I pay much attention to!

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