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O’ Brother, Where Art Thou: A Review

Student Author: Logan W.

O’ brother, where art thou? You’ll be asking yourself the same question as you are immersed into the world of Ethan and Joel Coen, loosely based on the epic poem The Odyssey written by Homer. In this movie, starring George Clooney as Ulysses Everett McGill, Ulysses is sentenced to a chain gang to work off his debt to society. Having been chained to two other men, Pete (John Turturro) and Delmar (Tim Blake Nelson), he promises them a stake in his riches in exchange for them to help him escape. They comply and take off on the run, starting off the beginning of an amazing journey full of interesting characters and crazy misadventures akin to the travels of Odysseus throughout the state of Mississippi, leaving but one question to everyone in the state: Just who are the Soggy Bottom Boys?

The movie provides a unique perspective to The Odyssey that you wouldn’t find anywhere else. The Coens have the much needed eye for creativity and change the stories from Homer's poems and put a spin on them to relate to the 1930s. What’s surprising is that they were able to alter the stories, but make them have such a unique twist on them that, if you aren’t actively looking for symmetry, you would likely find only a couple of the many, many references to the book. The fact that this movie is able to reference a great literary classic and have its own plot makes this movie truly one to look forward to watching.


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