The Coen Brothers: Over the Line!

The Coen Brothers: Over The Line!

Joel and Ethan Coen have written and made some of the most memorable movies of all time. Joel was born in 1954, and Ethan was born a few years later in 1957. The brothers grew up in a suburb near Minneapolis, Minnesota. They had been interested in film making at an early age, and Joel saved up his money to buy their first video camera, a Vivitar Super 8 when they were kids. They immediately began making short films and upon graduating from high school in 1973 and Ethan in 1976, the brothers attended film school at NYU. Joel eventually met famous director Sam Raimi, who hired him on as an editor. The Coen Brother's very first directorial debut was a film called Blood Simple, and it already indicated what was to come: dark humor, several intertwined stories, and a bit of the macabre. Actors would later call them "the two-headed director" because the brothers worked so closely together.

After a few more goes at independent films, the Coens released the wildly successful comedy Raising Arizona. The film starred Nicholas Cage and Holly Hunter, and involved the unlikely marriage of a two-bit criminal and his police officer wife. The couple in the film want a child so bad that they steal one from a wealthy businessman. Hilarity ensues, and the movie became a gigantic hit with audiences across America. Throughout the 1980s and 1990s, the Coen Brothers made several critically acclaimed films including Barton Fink, The Hudsucker Proxy, Fargo, O Brother Where Art Thou, and The Man Who Wasn't There. Their movies starred several big names including George Clooney, John Goodman, Tom Hanks, Billy Bob Thornton, Brad Pitt, and many other famous stars. The movie Fargo is one of their most well known films, and starred actress Frances McDormand, whom Joel Coen later married.

One film by the Coen Brothers that particularly stands out is The Big Lebowski. The film starred Jeff Bridges, John Goodman, and Steve Buscemi, and is considered one of the most well loved cult classic films of all time. The movie involves a guy known as "the dude" who gets involved in a kidnapping scandal and has no idea what he is in for. The film is so popular that several books have been written about it, and there is an annual Lebowski Festival held each year. By 2007, the Coen Brothers had made several highly successful comedies, dramas, and mysteries. Their film No Country For Old Men, based on the novel by author Cormac McCarthy, won four Academy Awards including Best Picture. Throughout their careers, Joel and Ethan Coen have displayed their talents for script writing, casting, and directing. While often dark in tone, their style of combining smart dialogue with intense backdrops and unusual characters has earned them 21 Academy Awards, and 3 Golden Globes.

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