While Jeff Bridges, Matt Damon, and Josh Brolin have their names above the marquee, the star of True Grit is thirteen year old Hailee Steinfeld.
Julian Roman - MovieWeb
Truer than the John Wayne showpiece and less gritty than the book, this True Grit is just tasty enough to leave movie lovers hungry for a missing spice.
Lisa Schwarzbaum - Entertainment Weekly
The Coens, who like to play with genre, often with giggles and winks, haven't mounted an assault on the western. But in Mattie they have created a character whose single-minded pursuit of vengeance has unmistakable resonance.
Manohla Dargis - New York Times
Joel and Ethan Coen have pulled off an impressive feat: repurposing a classic film with their idiosyncratic blend of dark, deadpan humor and palpable suspense, while remaining ultra-faithful to the novel.
Claudia Puig - USA Today
True Grit has sweep and scope and entertainment value to burn, but it's Mattie who invests even the grandest aesthetic elements with meaning.
Ann Hornaday - Washington Post
The brothers prove they can play it straight, but they're preferred, for better and worse, at a sharp angle.
Wesley Morris - Boston Globe
True Grit is well-wrought, if overly talkative, and seriously ambitious, returning the Coens to the all-American sagebrush and gun smoke landscape that has best nourished their wise-guy sensibility
J. Hoberman - Village Voice
"True Grit" proves to be as funny and heroic as any other legend, and tells an expert tale to boot.
Joe Neumaier - New York Daily News
Joel Coen and Ethan Coen fill the film with self-conscious good humor-hey, it's the Coen brothers-and the charmingly old-fashioned locutions of the Charles Portis novel.
Joe Morgenstern - Wall Street Journal
If Laura Ingalls Wilder took a detour through Cormac McCarthy country on the way to her Little House, she might stumble upon True Grit, a classic Western tale livened up by a few Coen brothers tweaks.
Chris Vognar - Dallas Morning News
This True Grit makes the original almost unwatchable except as a curio.
Lisa Kennedy - Denver Post
This is a visually and sonically beautiful movie that uses space, distance and time to immerse you in a very particular world of mystery, awe and brutality.
Glenn Kenny - MSN Movies
Nothing very startling happens, but the Coens have a sure hand, and Bridges, in the old John Wayne role, plays a man, not a myth; you can sense Rooster's stink and his nasty intelligence, too.
David Denby - New Yorker
I'm surprised the Coens made this film, so unlike their other work, except in quality.
Roger Ebert - Chicago Sun-Times
It feels more like an assignment fulfilled than a passion pursued. But craft this strong - and, despite the tonal uncertainty, true - should not be taken for granted.
Michael Phillips - Chicago Tribune
This remake by Joel and Ethan Coen is being positioned as a truer True Grit, and though they take their own liberties with the plot and tone, they preserve Portis's impeccably authentic dialogue.
J. R. Jones - Chicago Reader
True Grit is probably the least ironic picture in the Coen Brothers' worthy canon, but that doesn't mean it's devoid of their signature oddities, that it doesn't take a few dark, strange turns.
Steven Rea - Philadelphia Inquirer
It's a tonal mash-up no one but the Coens could deliver, the finest, most intelligent Western since "Unforgiven," with the funniest public hanging since "Blazing Saddles."
Colin Covert - Minneapolis Star Tribune
True Grit isn't so much a major film as a good time, and there's nothing wrong with that. Maybe this movie can get westerns back in the saddle again.
Tom Long - Detroit News
True Grit is a gorgeously shot, well-acted Western that resonates more the more you let it settle.
Bill Goodykoontz - Arizona Republic
If there's one thing I don't need in my Christmas stocking this year, it's a sorry, lumbering and unasked-for remake of the 1969 sagebrush saga True Grit.
Rex Reed - New York Observer
It's hard to imagine bigger boots to fill than the ones that earned John Wayne his Oscar in True Grit, and yet Jeff Bridges handily reinvents the iconic role of Rooster Cogburn in the Coen brothers' back-to-the-book remake.
Peter Debruge - Variety
The purity of Steinfeld's ability to convey Mattie's guileless sense of justice gives the film plenty of emotional ballast, particularly in the last 20 minutes or so.
Kyle Smith - New York Post
Kind of a victory lap for Jeff Bridges. Dark. And not as much fun as the original.
Roger Moore - Orlando Sentinel
In choosing not to reinvent the wagon wheel with True Grit, the Coens ironically seem radical by being conformists. There's truth and beauty in their faithfulness, though, and a reminder never to presume too much about these sibling ciphers.
Peter Howell - Toronto Star
A great film that will stand the test of time.
Laremy Legel - Film.com
Mainly, "True Grit" functions as an elaborate homage that results in their most conventional outing behind the camera.
Eric Kohn - indieWIRE
Though handsomely made and well acted, the film never completely escapes the sense that it's an exercise in genre excavation.
Liam Lacey - Globe and Mail
Some people are expressing amazement that Joel and Ethan Coen would set out to make a classic western in the first place, and then that they'd accomplish it. All I can say is that those folks haven't been paying attention.
Andrew O'Hehir - Salon.com
Just saddle up and see it yourself.
Dana Stevens - Slate
True Grit, one of the best films of 2010, is a reminder of why remakes are not always bad.
James Berardinelli - ReelViews
Well-made and acted Coen Brothers remake lacks the humor and resonance that might have made it memorable.
Todd McCarthy - Hollywood Reporter
It's sort of a screwball Western, if you will, with vivid performances and strikingly vast, picturesque vistas, the always gorgeous work of the always great Roger Deakins, the Coens' frequent cinematographer.
Christy Lemire - Associated Press
The tense verbal comedy of Mattie's early negotiation with a Fort Smith merchant should win you over to this movie's high linguistic wit.
Richard Corliss - TIME Magazine
The Coens have crafted a vastly entertaining Wild West show that is memorable in every particular.
Peter Travers - Rolling Stone
The big names in the cast all do excellent work, but the biggest surprise is all but unknown Steinfeld.
Kenneth Turan - Los Angeles Times
The year's best film. Deeply moving and entirely unexpected.
Sean Burns - Philadelphia Weekly
A fascinating study in how two films can follow the same source material fairly closely but come up with interpretations so tonally, spiritually different--but equally valid.
Michael Dequina - TheMovieReport.com
Fantastic performances all around, great dialogue and damn fine filmmaking make this one of the best of the year.
Matt Joseph - We Got This Covered
With his leisurely growl, somewhere between trail-grizzled and post-nap, Bridges sounds as if he's talking through his collar, in a vocal performance that's entertaining no matter what he's saying.
Nicolas Rapold - Film Comment Magazine
Duke has been usurped by the Dude, and I couldn't be more thrilled by the experience of watching one of our finest actors take a role as iconic as Rooster Cogburn and indisputably make it his own.
Al Alexander - The Patriot Ledger
It may not rank among the Coen Brothers' greatest works, but their new adaptation of the Portis novel is intriguing to watch, beautifully filmed, and well worth taking a look at for the fascinating characters.
Jeff Beck - Examiner.com
True Grit is as close to Disney as the Coens get. And go figure, this time out, it is meant as a compliment.
Dan Jardine - Cinemania
Non-gritty update a step up from John Wayne and Glen Campbell
Marty Mapes - Movie Habit
Nell Minow - Movie Mom at Yahoo! Movies
... The best of both worlds: a classic Western and classic Coen brothers.
Greg Maki - Star-Democrat (Easton, MD)
...a traditional Western that's been augmented with a number of irresistibly off-kilter elements.
David Nusair - Reel Film Reviews
Not as out-there as Lebowski, as bleak as No Country, or as twisted as Fargo, but it crackles, like a good campfire, with colorful Coen flourishes all the same.
Neil Pond - American Profile
Either I'm softening on the Coens or they are softening themselves. Not as darkly comic as their prior films, this western is easily one of their better films.
Wesley Lovell - Cinema Sight
The dialogue zings with period flourish and point-blank delivery.
Stella Papamichael - Digital Spy
Jeff Bridges is rough and rowdy marshal Ruben "Rooster" Cogburn, and manages to put his own stamp on the role made famous in 1969 by John Wayne. It's no surprise that he knows how to bring a wide palette of colors to this character, and he seems to be...
Leonard Maltin - Leonard Maltin's Picks
The title refers to the trait Mattie needs in her avenger, though the film sympathizes with the criminal outcasts.
Matthew Sorrento - IdentityTheory
... the most accessible and successful (financially speaking) film of their career.
Sean Axmaker - MSN.com
This True Grit is timeless.
Rob Humanick - Slant Magazine
The new movie really is quite different from the older one, and in almost every way an improvement.
John J. Puccio - Movie Metropolis
A marvelous film. The highlight is the performance of Hailee Steinfeld as the young heroine, Mattie Ross, but also boasting strong turns by Jeff Bridges and Matt Damon.
Rich Heldenfels - Akron Beacon Journal
The brothers' fidelity to Portis' novel not only honors a great literary achievement but also makes for a narrative with fascinating interruptions, digressions and enigmatic encounters...
Richard T. Jameson - Parallax View
This isn't the deepest Western or the most thoughtful Coen brothers film, but dang if it isn't a good time.
Eric D. Snider - EricDSnider.com
There's a first time for everything and, finally, now there's a Coen Brothers movie that you can watch alongside your parents without them complaining that it's too weird.
Dave White - Movies.com
Does Damon spend the whole movie doing his Matthew McConaughey impression? Yeah. If you've seen the bit in question, it's actually kind of distracting.
Pete Vonder Haar - Houston Press
Mas que una remake, una readaptacion de la novela original hecha con mayor fidelidad. En sus mejores momentos (y Temple de Acero tiene varios buenos momentos) los Coen siguen demostrando por que son dos de los mas brillantes cineastas de la actualidad.
Enrique Buchichio - Uruguay Total
Bridges is a riot, and Damon proves himself once again. But it's Steinfeld who most amazes; more than a child actor, she's an actual performer, playing a character.
Josh Hurst - Christianity Today
It's a superior film in every way to Henry Hathaway's original, though that film shouldn't be discounted.
Alistair Harkness - Scotsman
This masterful, touching, and hugely entertaining picture is a rousing depiction of manly leadership and moral certitude set in a world unencumbered by political correctness.
Henry Fitzherbert - Daily Express
The Coen brothers' excellent western True Grit is a second and rather different version of Charles Portis's novel, rather than a remake of the 1969 film that brought John Wayne an Oscar as the one-eyed bounty hunter Marshal Rooster Cogburn.
Solid, classy entertainment with something for practically everyone, from casual film fans to Coen brothers obsessives.
Catherine Bray - Film4
Jennie Kermode - Eye for Film
True Grit is the third film the Coen brothers have made since the triumph of No Country for Old Men. It's just as characteristic and deserves just as much success.
David Sexton - This is London
At an uncertain time for heroes in America, there's no wonder it's packing 'em in.
John Walsh - Independent
The Dude fills the Duke's boots for straight-shooting Coens.
Jason Best - Movie Talk
What makes True Grit truly brilliant, however, isn't just the Coens' reverence for the style and tone of the Westerns of yesteryear, but the John Ford-inspired manner in which they manage to both epitomise and eulogise the myth of the Old West...
Shaun Munro - What Culture
Ate mesmo John Wayne seria obrigado a reconhecer a superioridade desta nova versao.
Pablo Villaca - Cinema em Cena
Not surprisingly, Joel and Ethan Coen's True Grit is leaner, meaner and funnier than the 1969 John Wayne Western that first put grizzled US Marshal Rooster Cogburn on screen.
John Hazelton - Screen International
Like a cowboy lassoed behind a horse, the Coen brothers have dragged the Western kicking and screaming into the 21st Century... and How!
Alex Zane - Sun Online
It meanders along, convinced of its own idiosyncratic suavity, never venturing out of its makers' comfort zones.
Sukhdev Sandhu - Daily Telegraph
The Coens are nothing if not film buffs, and their framings lovingly copy earlier movies, most noticeably John Ford's The Searchers and Charles Laughton's Night Of The Hunter.
Christopher Tookey - Daily Mail [UK]
This True Grit is a very impressive piece of work, beautifully photographed by Roger Deakins, and if you had never seen the original, it might be getting even higher praise.
A riveting ride with a fabulous cast.
Jeremy Aspinall - Radio Times
Hugely enjoyable, pleasingly old-fashioned (and Oscar nominated) Western that gets everything right...
Matthew Turner - ViewLondon
A series of photogravures formed into an elegant, high-toned flip book.
Nigel Andrews - Financial Times
It could be the Coens' most straightforward film, but it's also one of their best.
Dave Calhoun - Time Out
Graham Young - Birmingham Post
Remakes that outdo the original are as rare as a brimstone preacher in a saloon bar...but this leaves Henry Hathaway's 60s version stone dead.
Tim Evans - Sky Movies
True Grit stands as an impressive deconstruction (and revalorisation) of the western genre, as a vast improvement on Hathaway's True Grit from the late Sixties, and as a collection of excellent performances, fine technique and oddball moments
Anton Bitel - Eye for Film
Imagine you heard the Coen brothers had gone and made a straight-up Western. Now imagine Jeff Bridges, Josh Brolin and Matt Damon were in it. As movie news goes, that's on a par with Christina Hendricks signing up for the Piranha 3D sequel.
Robbie Collin - News of the World
Terrific: tough, exciting, funny, gorgeous and bewitchingly acted, this is darn close to perfection.
Angie Errigo - Empire Magazine
The kind of slam-bang entertainment that's rare in filmmaking today and is truly the grittiest western of the decade.
Roger Tennis - Cinemaclips.com
Even if the movie doesn't immediately blow you away like a shotgun blast, it'll creep up on you like rattlesnake venom.
Andrew Hedley - Flicks.co.nz
Bridges' performance as Cogburn is so good you can almost smell the whiskey as he growls and drawls his way through the script.
Tim Martain - The Mercury
When we see Cogburn in full flight - riding against four armed men - this is rousing stuff. You'd like to think the Duke himself would be applauding the Dude from afar.
Michael Bonner - Uncut Magazine [UK]
True Grit is a parable of strong spiritual significance in its exploration of the attainment of sin in the pursuit of revenge, and mercy in the face of death.
Matthew Pejkovic - Matt's Movie Reviews
Excellent production values (especially costume design) couple with standout performances from Jeff Bridges and Matt Damon for a terrific cinematic escape.
Tyler Hanley - Palo Alto Weekly
Steinfeld more than holds her own in this high callibre company, shining in her role, as the Coen's shift the focus of the film on to her character to mirror the original novel's style.
Giles Hardie - Sydney Morning Herald
(The Coen Brothers have) created one of the great westerns of the modern era, harnessing the wild west vibe they sprinkled through No Country For Old Men but this time diving whole-heartedly into the traditions and era of the genre.
Matt Neal - The Standard
True Grit is as good as one of their minor works gets.
Craig Mathieson - sbs.com.au
Although it mightn't be Coen in quirk, it certainly is Coen in quality.
Anders Wotzke - Moviedex
On its own merits, without considering its origins, True Grit is a fantastic film ... and might be considered one of the Coens' best when their career is looked at in retrospect.
Matt Kelemen - Las Vegas CityLife
Steinfeld takes everything in her stride and makes every scene her own, an achievement made all the more remarkable given she is on screen for virtually the entire picture.
Leigh Paatsch - Herald Sun (Australia)
Delivers a perfectly fine, character-driven revenge yarn before unaccountably falling into a heap in its final act.
Jim Schembri - The Age (Australia)
Reviewing a Coen Brothers film is usually an exercise in inventively arranging superlatives, and True Grit definitely doesn't break from the mould.
Alice Tynan - Concrete Playground
True Grit is exceptionally entertaining and is probably the first in the Coen canon that could almost be categorized as a family film. Almost.
Sean Rom - Trespass
Driven by pitch-perfect performances and a real sense of reverence for the western, this marks another extraordinary achievement for the Coens.
Erin Free - FILMINK (Australia)
Jeff Bridges ain't the Duke, no sir, but the Duke weren't Jeff Bridges, neither.
Paul Byrnes - Sydney Morning Herald
Joel and Ethan Coen's adaptation of Charles Portis' novel has all the trimmings you'd expect from a film by these brothers extraordinaire
Jay Antani - Cinema Writer
True Grit is essential viewing, a significant installment in the Coen brothers' exploration of what it means to be an American and just a damn good yarn.
Scott Henderson - The Vine
True Grit is a compelling and engaging story that is told effectively and confidently.
Thomas Caldwell - Cinema Autopsy
Delivers not just retribution but audience satisfaction
Andrew L. Urban - Urban Cinefile
The Coens have adapted Charles Portis's novel, not the Marguerite Roberts screenplay, and the result is breathtaking
Louise Keller - Urban Cinefile
Only filmmakers with as impressive a back catalogue and supreme a talent as the Coen brothers could relax and produce a film as 'simple and straight' as True Grit and have it still be a thrilling, haunting, hilarious, minor-masterpiece.
Simon Miraudo - Quickflix
As a nearly-definitive cinematic representation, one doubts it will ever be contested.
Rob Humanick - Projection Booth
At just thirteen years of age, Heilee Steinfeld delivers one of the most memorable performances of the year.
Nick Deigman - Fan The Fire
After you've lived through "Animal Kingdom," "Blue Valentine" and "The Kids Are All Right," come for a ride on these trails and enter a whole more relaxing landscape.
Jules Brenner - Cinema Signals
The old-school American western was not dead, it seems. It was just playing possum, waiting for the Coens to come along and rouse it.
- National Post
Haunted, painterly, and unafraid of mouthfuls of Portis' prose, it's a marriage of Mark Twain and Brothers Grimm as well as a gallant remembrance
Fernando F. Croce - CinePassion
It's mean as a snake and has no illusions about the Glorious West.
Norman Wilner - NOW Toronto
The look and tone of this literary western tells you immediately that you are in the capable hands of great filmmakers who bother with even the smallest details.
Clint O'Connor - Cleveland Plain Dealer
Jeff Bridges as Rooster Cogburn is both hilarious and deadly.
Widgett Walls - Needcoffee.com
'Is your every utterance to be indecipherable, Marshall? Your vocalizations are less words than outhouse rumbles after overconsumption of whisky and chicken wings. Does your throat retain an unfortunate tumbleweed?'
Mark Ramsey - MovieJuice!
True Grit carries on gallantly for much if its ride, but when the sun sets in the west, it's still missing something.
Jordan Hiller - Bangitout.com
Audiences should be so lucky if all remakes were this good (and this isn't even a remake.)
Kevin A. Ranson - MovieCrypt.com
In the earlier rendition, the Duke was the star, period. Here, while Jeff Bridges is the star, it is as first among equals with his costars, especially [Hailee] Steinfeld.
Robin Clifford - Reeling Reviews
The Coens' film is franker than its predecessor about the violence of the old West and of Portis's book; it is also franker about the religiosity.
Steven D. Greydanus - Decent Films Guide
Tight, smart, funny and compelling.
Gregory Weinkauf - Huffington Post
Watching them snipe at each other was one of the undeniable pleasures of the 2010 movie season.
Michael W. Phillips, Jr. - Goatdog's Movies
The Coen Brothers dark and quirky look at an old story/movie is entertaining, but Jeff Bridges is no John Wayne. One is a legend and one is not.
Jackie K. Cooper - jackiekcooper.com
Demonstrates that the Coens' mastery of filmmaking is so complete they are able to jettison most of their fabled eccentricities and idiosyncrasies and still beat Hollywood's straight shooters at their own game.
John Beifuss - Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
True Grit is a western with a Coen twist that also remembers the original with a fond tribute.
Lori Hoffman - Atlantic City Weekly
Stands on its' own as an instant classic to which even 'The Duke' himself would tip his hat.
Bruce Bennett - Spectrum (St. George, Utah)
The best overall cast of the year and Steinfeld does a great job of keeping up with Bridges and Damon.
Jeff Bayer - The Scorecard Review
Even though the Coens make a conscious turn away from sentimentality as often as they can -- much like their crafty lead character -- True Grit takes on an unexpected and understated poignancy in its final sequence.
Eric Melin - Scene-Stealers.com
We didn't really need another True Grit, but the Coen brothers delivered a smart, funny retelling of the Rooster Cogburn saga all the same.
Christian Toto - What Would Toto Watch?
While Wayne stole the show in the original film, Steinfeld easily takes the honor this time around with a performance that belies the actress's age and experience.
Alison Gang - San Diego Union-Tribune
True Grit is not without its rewards, but the Coens can't quite make the case why this story needed to be told again.
Daniel M. Kimmel - New England Movies Weekly
The Coens' black humor perfectly matches Charles Portis' original observations.
While the Coens' film is more astringent and lacks Hathaway's sweetened ending, it does not wander off down black trails in pursuit of violent quirk.
Philip Martin - Arkansas Democrat-Gazette
Jeff Bridges must be commended for his fresh interpretation of the roguish Rooster Cogburn.
Kam Williams - NewsBlaze
The Coens have made careers out of slyly subverting and expanding the genres they take on. Dial that back and you're left with an inherent disappointment.
Robert Levin - Critic's Notebook
The Coens Return the Western from the post-Modern to the Classic in this Fun, Briskly Poetic Flick.
Jimmy O - Film Snobs
Another "edgy" movie by the Coens filled with the usual comic mixture of sadism and misanthropy, this time expressed through its two lead male characters, a bushwhacker veteran and a Texas Ranger, two of America's most malignant forces.
Louis Proyect - rec.arts.movies.reviews
Worth watching for its excellent cast, notably Hailee Steinfeld, but one can't escape feeling there should've been much more to the Coen brothers' True Grit. Still, the Duke's presence aside, it's a definite improvement over the original.
Diva Velez - TheDivaReview.com
The real reason to see the film is the work of the Coens' regular collaborators, cinematographer Roger Deakins and composer Carter Burwell, who supply the visual and auditory landscapes that are True Grit's most notable achievement.
Christopher Orr - The Atlantic
Knowing he can't outgun a legend,the Dude doesn't try to out-duke the Duke. He adds a dimension here and there, and his copycat performance is almost a tribute.
Gary Wolcott - Tri-City Herald
No one will lose out, as both pictures are of comparable value. Forced to choose, I'd actually go with the Duke's at-bat, although Jeff Bridges is certainly more than capable in taking on the iconic role.
Matt Brunson - Creative Loafing
The Coen Brothers' True Grit may not be a better movie than the original but it's certainly a better production.
Matt Singer - IFC.com
Despite the source novel and the original film, this one feels precisely like a pure Coen brothers film; they have taken everything that came before and made it their own.
Jeffrey M. Anderson - Combustible Celluloid
What you don't get from the commercials is how wonderfully funny it is. Of course, you expect something like this from the Coen brothers. In True Grit, they deliver what they normally do, which is a fantastic mix of humor and, you'll forgive me here, grit
Jenna Busch - SheKnows Network
The Bible argues an eye for an eye. But as Rooster Cogburn doesn't have an eye to spare, the movie needs to ask if their death quest is worth the risk.
Amy Nicholson - Boxoffice Magazine
Based on the beloved 1968 novel by Arkansas writer Charles Portis, "True Grit" is an American classic featuring scenes of galvanic violence, befitting a true Wild West tale.
James Verniere - Boston Herald
"True Grit" succeeds because of the interplay among its three main characters. It can stand on its own and need not worry about being lost in the shadow of the original.
Bob Bloom - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN)
Beautifully executed on all levels including Deakins' stunning cinematography, Burwell's emotional score, the Coen's perfect direction and Bridges/Steinfeld's epic performances.
Kevin McCarthy - BDK Reviews
No doubt many will favorably compare 'True Grit' to 'No Country for Old Men' (2007) and rightfully so...I see no reason why someone like Sarah Palin would not love this film.
John Esther - UR Chicago Magazine
The Coens' triple-barreled gamble - adapting a classic book that's previously been adapted for a classic film headlined by a famous star - succeeds beautifully.
John Wirt - Advocate (Baton Rouge, LA)
Coens capture lightning in a bottle with Steinfeld.
Bob Grimm - Reno News and Review
Everything about it feels fresh, new and, yes, unmistakably a Coen Brothers picture. It's also one of the best films of the year, and almost certainly the best-looking one.
Ken Hanke - Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)
Diana Saenger - ReviewExpress.com
The Dude trump the Duke in Grit-ier Remake.
Charles Koplinski - Illinois Times
consistently engrossing and suspenseful, with flashes of dark humor that offset the gradual revelation of genuine sentiment
James Kendrick - Q Network Film Desk
Looking at True Grit in a vacuum - not just free of the Coen Brothers other films but the original 1969 John Wayne version as well - it is a fantastic movie experience.
Kevin Carr - 7M Pictures
The movie surpasses the original in sound effects, cinematography and a Western-themed original score. Other kudos go to the interior design of the courtroom, the scenes of Main Street and the period apparel.
Keith Cohen - Entertainment Spectrum
The twist is that there's no twist at all in "True Grit." With consummate skill and loving care, the Coens created a film that's a beautiful ode to a venerable movie genre.
Rob Thomas - Capital Times (Madison, WI)
The breakthrough star performance by 13-year-old Hailee Steinfeld is an unexpected revelation.
Kurt Loder - Reason Online
The Coen brothers shoot straight with a slick, surreal remake of this classic Western.
Susan Granger - SSG Syndicate
It's my number four pick for best film of the year. (Parental Review also Available)
Jim Judy - Screen It!
Remake, re-imagining, call it what you will - True Grit is the Coen brothers' best movie in a decade.
Christopher Lloyd - Sarasota Herald-Tribune
Seemingly simple and straightforward upon first glance, the handsome period Western blossoms considerably into a profound nostalgic experience.
Jen Yamato - Movies.com
True Grit stands as a testament to the fact that apparently it IS possible to produce an excellent remake of a classic and beloved film.
Vic Holtreman - ScreenRant
Even a "pretty good" Coen brothers film is still head and shoulders above career bests by most filmmakers.
Ian Buckwalter - DCist
A rousing adventure that's also sneakily comic, with humor that rises from the sharply drawn characters and the dialogue they spout. And how wonderfully they spout!
Matt Soergel - Florida Times-Union
It just feels minor, albeit minor in the way of two of our very best geniuses.
Tim Brayton - Antagony & Ecstasy
This is Portis, very nearly, on the screen -- a transformation that was worth waiting some decades to get right.
Shawn Levy - Oregonian
The manner of speaking, disdaining the use of contractions a la Damon Runyon, adds a lot to the charm of the film. Bridges and Steinfeld give bravura performances.
Tony Medley - Tolucan Times
My only reservation about the movie, not a serious one but a nagging one, is that watching the film it's hard to see why the Coens wanted to make it.
Mick LaSalle - San Francisco Chronicle
It plays to deeps but, like most of the Coens' films, it plays brilliantly on the surface as well.
Walter Chaw - Film Freak Central
In addition to being the Coens' most sentimental movie, it is probably their simplest.
Chris Hewitt (St. Paul) - St. Paul Pioneer Press
The Coens' True Grit doesn't just honor the original -- it gives the story new life.
Josh Bell - Las Vegas Weekly
Writer-directors Joel and Ethan Coen preserve the spare tone and stilted formality of language in Charles Portis' slim 1968 novel to craft a tale of frontier justice that is equal parts "Deadwood" and Dickens.
Duane Dudek - Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
The Coens' version benefits from Roger Deakins' beautiful cinematography and a much snappier pace....
Andy Klein - Brand X
This is a dirty, stinky Western -- the kind where authenticity is the guiding artistic hand and where a layer of filth and grime have seemingly settled over everything but the popcorn in your lap.
Mike Scott - Times-Picayune
The Coens adhere much closer to Portis' novel than the 1969 adaptation did, relishing the era-appropriate
language as if it were their own tongue and imbuing the proceedings with a romantic, ultimately melancholy sense of adventure.
William Goss - Orlando Weekly
If anyone ever needed a quick lesson in the difference between being a great star and being a great actor, a new "True Grit" arrives to give a master's class.
Stephen Whitty - Newark Star-Ledger
It's somewhat disappointing to say that I merely like it. I understand why people will fall head over heels for it but my feet stayed firmly on the ground.
Brian Tallerico - HollywoodChicago.com
Jeff Bridges is no John Wayne, but he does help make this True Grit one of the best westerns you will ever see.
Willie Waffle - WaffleMovies.com
True Grit is indeed a true Coen brothers movie.
Tricia Olszewski - Washington City Paper
True Grit speaks to our current moment of vengeful, moral uncertainty. It continues the same revamped Americana that distinguished the Coens' sophisticated remake of The Ladykillers -- a truly original religiouspolitical hybrid.
Armond White - New York Press
The Coens' version of True Grit remains faithful to the Portis novel, although much of the book's humor falls flat in the course of its delivery in the film.
Marjorie Baumgarten - Austin Chronicle
In the West imagined by Charles Portis' 1969 novel and the Coens, even an exercise in nostalgia comes equipped with sudden death and cold irony.
Kelly Vance - East Bay Express
The thought of remaking the film that finally garnered an Academy Award for John Wayne seemed inconceivable at first, but in the hands of Oscar winners Ethan and Joel Coen, 'True Grit,' is a splendid delight and a reboot that Wayne would be proud of.
Wilson Morales - AOL Black Voices
Almost entirely bereft of the Coens' usual nihilistic commentary, True Grit has no bigger agenda than being one of the best, most handsome Westerns you've ever seen.
Brandon Fibbs - BrandonFibbs.com
Give it to the Coens then: for all the mayhem and marble-mouthed exchanges about morality and machismo, their film is also remarkably appealing, populated by characters who are lacerating, loopy and defiantly capable of surprising each other.
Kevin Williamson - Jam! Movies
The best thing in this remake is Hailee Steinfeld as the young girl Mattie Ross who hires Cogburn to help her track down her father's killer.
Beth Accomando - KPBS.org
The filmmaking brothers are a perfect match for the material, and 2010's True Grit turned out to be one of the best films of the year.
Rebecca Murray - About.com
A character actor rather than a Hollywood monument, Bridges so thoroughly cloaks himself in Cogburn's darkness that he threatens to disappear altogether. The same could never be said of Wayne, but the point of 'True Grit' is not to invite comparisons.
Rossiter Drake - San Francisco Examiner
I was pleasantly surprised to see the Coen brothers actually produce a real western that holds up pretty well against the original.
Robert Roten - Laramie Movie Scope
Steinfeld delivers the best performance by any American actress that I have seen in 2010.
Christopher Long - Movie Metropolis
The Coen brothers' singular spin on the material and their stellar cast's take on their roles distinguishes - and elevates - this remake from the original.
Annlee Ellingson - Moving Pictures Magazine
...less faithful to actual plot details than the Henry Hathaway film that starred John Wayne, but it gets the tone exactly right.
Luke Y. Thompson - E! Online
Bridges is a marvelous Cogburn, leaking words out of the side of his mouth as if he were simultaneously chewing on gravel. Those fearless Coens, refusing to be pigeon-holed, treat us to a tall order of bona fide grit.
Kimberly Gadette - Indie Movies Online
The Coens' makings, maybe, were just a little too dry. But the thing still smokes.
Stephanie Zacharek - Movieline
...the Coen brothers have produced their most traditional and accessible film yet. And that's not a bad thing.
Jeff Meyers - Metro Times (Detroit, MI)
The Coen brothers have made their most sincere film yet, a western as spare and yet majestic as its unspoiled landscapes.
Nell Minow - Beliefnet
Coen brothers tackle classic Western with wit and brutality.
S. Jhoanna Robledo - Common Sense Media
On its own conventional terms, the film succeeds -- maybe not as a "Coen Brothers" movie, but as a tall tale well told.
Peter Rainer - Christian Science Monitor
Those of us who admire Charles Portis' novel have waited 40 years for a screen version that's as literal as possible -- and the Coen brothers just about deliver it.
Lawrence Toppman - Charlotte Observer
An old-time, classically told Cowboy Movie, and a darned good one.
Norm Schrager - Filmcritic.com
It is not clear we needed another adaptation of the Charles Portis novel, but the production is first rate. It has more texture and more edge.
Mark R. Leeper - Mark Leeper's Reviews
It's moving, and brilliantly done, and shows how the Coens have strengthened and matured as filmmakers. Their work feels less engineered, and there's a new gravity and sincerity to it.
Gary Thompson - Philadelphia Daily News
If the Wild West has a code, the Coen brothers are playing it by the book.
Radheyan Simonpillai - AskMen.com
...the Coens' film makes it far more clear that the true grit in question belongs to Mattie (and her horse Little Blackie!), largely due to their discovery's formidable, clear-eyed acting talent.
Laura Clifford - Reeling Reviews
A genuine triumph for all concerned...one of the year's best films.
Frank Swietek - One Guy's Opinion
Bumptious though it might be, Bridges's performance touches on the same depths and complexities that Wayne did in those masterpieces. And the Coen brothers, like Ford, confront and clarify the paradoxes their film raises.
Peter Keough - Boston Phoenix
The Coen Brothers hit the bull's-eye with this captivating western where the good guys fight with words first and guns second.
Ethan Alter - Film Journal International
Once you settle in with the film that's in front of you, instead of the one you were expecting, True Grit draws you in as fully as the Coens' best work...
Rene Rodriguez - Miami Herald
Funny when you least expect it and driven by great performances from Bridges and Steinfeld, True Grit is every bit as good as it looks, but it's far from the Coens' best.
Jason Zingale - Bullz-Eye.com
These highfalutin boys sure know how to wrastle up one spitfire of a Western.
Randy Myers - Contra Costa Times
What seems like a boilerplate story comes alive through the passionate performances and finely tuned narrative, which sinks its hooks into you then drags you on a ride that grows increasingly wild, panic-ridden and beautiful.
Phil Villarreal - OK! Magazine
In overtaking a legend, this True Grit earns its spurs.
Joe Williams - St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Robert W. Butler - Kansas City Star
Bridges, that most natural of actors, gives an entirely different kind of performance: loose and playful, not worrying too much about whether we can understand him (often we can't, but never mind).
Moira MacDonald - Seattle Times
The Coens direct True Grit with a light touch, but like Portis' stark, funny novel, their adventure tale shaves off none of the rough edges. It's simultaneously rollicking and grave.
Keith Phipps - AV Club
...not only a clever, meticulous deconstruction of a genre's tropes. This is a real Western, the kind we don't get much anymore.
Josh Larsen - LarsenOnFilm
Putting aside their signature funky smart-aleck style, The Coen Brothers have still delivered what is truly one of the best, most polished and entertaining movies of the year.
Joanna Langfield - The Movie Minute
In a most deflating film year of unspeakable mediocrity, Grit is a welcome adrenaline shot of widescreen artistry and chewy personality, adding another trophy to the crowded mantle of these filmmaking masters.
Brian Orndorf - BrianOrndorf.com
Not only does it have the drop on the 1969 version, it's the first great movie of 2011.
Philip Kemp - Total Film
And while Bridges is not the Duke, he IS the Dude, and he makes Rooster his own...
Michael A. Smith - Nolan's Pop Culture Review
This disappointing Coen Brothers foray into the Western genre has little of the Brothers' trademark quality and barely improves on the John Wayne original.
Joe Lozito - Big Picture Big Sound
True Grit, nearly on par with the original film, is a reliable, if insubstantial, genre piece.
Mark Dujsik - Mark Reviews Movies
Moves at a clip in its second act that doesn't let its journey or lively script achieve the original's tension or emotion. What remains is its determination and attitude.
Matt Pais - Metromix.com
It's a kind of revelation to see how well the story of True Grit fits the sensibilities of the Coens.
Jeffrey Chen - ReelTalk Movie Reviews
Why did the typically sardonic Coens want to make this film? A glance at the Portis novel yields a simple answer: Why wouldn't they?
Rob Gonsalves - eFilmCritic.com
So much more than just a study in dusty chestnuts of the Wild West.
A terrific western..One of the best movies of the year and one that shows other filmmakers just how a western should be made.
Marshall Fine - Hollywood & Fine
The sweaty, elongated beards, undernourished horses and alcohol-soaked characters... True Grit made my nostrils flare; it was caked-on perspiration with a very distinct mustiness. Of course, the smell easily could have been the woman sitting next to me.
Adam Lippe - Examiner.com
The Coens craft a handsome Western that fits comfortably within genre traditions and their own distinctive body of work.
Geoff Berkshire - Metromix.com
[The] sense that there's something great just beyond the grasp of the Coens here, something that they may not even be aware of, hangs over this elegant yet somehow vaguely unfinished film.
MaryAnn Johanson - Flick Filosopher
[True Grit's] quill is dipped in the mysterious, magical ink of America's near-holy myths, then applied by the steady hands of masters.
Jordan Hoffman - UGO
After three consecutive films fixated on the absurd cruelty and randomness of life, Joel and Ethan Coen adopt a slightly more heartening perspective with True Grit.
Nick Schager - Slant Magazine
An entertaining and feisty Western from the Coen Brothers propelled by an incredibly fetching performance by Hailee Steinfeld as a wise beyond her years teenager with indomitable will-power.
Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat - Spirituality and Practice
Get Smart: Brain matter may be finally paying off when it comes to those famously shallow when not grossed out screen teens.
Prairie Miller - NewsBlaze
Its great strength is its contrast between a brash young innocent and a seen-it-all, laid-back older man.
Harvey S. Karten - Modamag.com
True Grit is done with such inventiveness that I was in moviegoing ecstasy.
Mike McGranaghan - Aisle Seat
Using the themes of protestant hymns such as "What a Friend We Have in Jesus" and "Leaning on the Everlasting Arms," Carter provides a score that soars above the film and resonates in your head long after you've left the theater.
Danny Minton - Fort Bend Sun
If grit were all you needed, this film would deliver on the grizzled men, dirty and grumbling with rotted teeth. Of course, you can also admire the story, the characters, the world, the humor and/or the action.
Fred Topel - Screen Junkies
Lean and mean, with a killer performance from Jeff Bridges, and star-making role for Halie Steinfeld.
Chris Bumbray - JoBlo's Movie Emporium
The directors' propensity for verbiage and ironic violence fits the story like a fringed suede glove. Welcome to the first stoic screwball Western.
David Fear - Time Out
The Coens have made the best Western since Unforgiven.
Jim Vejvoda - IGN Movies
The Coens' True Grit isn't as momentous an event as you might hope, but once you adjust to its deliberate rhythms (it starts slowly), it's a charming, deadpan Western comedy.
Remarkable remake of the 1969 film that starred John Wayne.
Dennis Schwartz - Ozus' World Movie Reviews
The very definition of [The Coens'] trademark surrealism and slick sense of humor injected in to an old fashioned revenge Western...
Felix Vasquez Jr. - Cinema Crazed
I knew Duke Wayne [no one who knew him called him "John"] -- and Jeff Bridges, you're no Duke Wayne.
Tony Macklin - tonymacklin.net
(VIDEO) "True Grit" is one damned fine western that's better than the original.
Cole Smithey - ColeSmithey.com
No one really asked for it and some may resist it, but Joel and Ethan Coen's splendid new adaptation of Charles Portis' novel True Grit rides with the great ones.
Pete Hammond - Boxoffice Magazine
A tight, concise Western that pays more homage than it does re-invent the genre, True Grit isn't quite the masterpiece some were expecting, but it's so much fun to watch that many will leave the theater thirsting for more.
Erik Davis - Cinematical
The Coens don't need to reinvent or deconstruct the Western. This isn't a 21st century take on anything, it's just a damn good Western story told damn well.
Devin Faraci - CHUD
The Coens are at the top of their game, honoring the great John Ford with a tip of the hat to Anthony Mann.
Anne Thompson - Thompson on Hollywood
The result is one of the most crowd-pleasing films I think the Coens have ever made, accessible and simple and mythic and beautiful...
Drew McWeeny - HitFix
The versatile Joel and Ethan Coen take a major step toward mainstream (and more conventional) cinema in their enjoyable, well acted remake of the 1969 classic Western, for which John Wayne won an Oscar and Jeff Bridges should get a nomination.
Emanuel Levy - EmanuelLevy.Com