|Jarmusch and Depp are a wonderful odd couple.|
Directed by Jim Jarmusch
Produced by Demetra J. MacBride
Written by Jim Jarmusch
Starring Johnny Depp, Gary Farmer and Lance Henriksen
Plot Summary: A wounded accountant (Depp) with a price on his head journeys to the spiritual world with the help of a Native American (Farmer).
Significance: Often cited as one of the best westerns in recent years, this film was featured in the latest Sight and Sound Poll (#322 in the 2012 directors’ poll), and it was even nominated for the Palme d’Or at the Cannes Film Festival. Also, it was nominated for four Independent Spirit Awards, including Best Feature.
Thoughts: Jim Jarmusch’s films always have an off-kilter atmosphere, and Dead Man makes great use of it. The black-and-white cinematography really sets the mood, while the performances all have a certain endearing oddness to them. Naturally, Johnny Depp is the perfect lead casting, particularly at the time this film was made. There are also several great cameos, including Billy Bob Thornton, Alfred Molina, and Robert Mitchum. The film does drag towards the end, but it’s a fascinating, bizarre postmodern western with Jarmusch’s daft sense of humor at its finest. It’s definitely worth a look, especially for Depp or Jarmusch fans.