A tale told by a Coen brother — full of sound and fury, signifying what all the other Coen Brothers movies have signified


Jackson Arn, Forward

Like a Technicolor noir or a Seth Rogen drama, a Coen brothers movie based on someone else’s writing is a rare and risky proposition. By my count, only one fully successful example exists: “No Country for Old Men,” adapted from Cormac McCarthy’s novel.

Then there are the four others that nobody seems too eager to revisit: “The Ballad of Buster Scruggs” (based partly on stories by Stewart Edward White and Jack London), “True Grit” (based on a novel by Charles Portis), “The Ladykillers” (based on William Rose’s screenplay for the original film of that name), and “Oh Brother, Where Art Thou?” (based on some poetry by a promising newcomer named Homer). One for five would be a lame batting average for anyone, let alone two of the greatest power-hitters of the last few decades. But if there had to be another Coen adaptation, you couldn’t have asked for a snugger fit than “Macbeth.”