There have been some terrific debut films from directors over the years. RESERVOIR DOGS. CITIZEN KANE. BEING JOHN MALKOVICH. DISTRICT 9. Some never reach the same heights as their first movie and others use it as a springboard to a legendary career. And plenty of directors need a movie or three before they leave us with something memorable.
Like Michael Mann and THIEF in 1981, Joel and Ethan Coen were pretty goddamn great right out of the gate and just got better and better at making movies. BLOOD SIMPLE, which the brothers directed, wrote, edited, and produced on a $1.5M budget that they raised via a mere trailer in 1982, is an excellent, twisty modern day noir that gives audiences a peek of what would come from these media-shy siblings over the ensuing decades.
Packed with backstabbing, laughs when you don't expect them, duplicitous lovers, some blood, and a stellar cast (including Frances McDormand's film debut), this 1984 release set and filmed in Texas remains among the Coens' best. You'll never look at Dickie Dunn the same way again.
Simply, if you're a fan of these guys and haven't seen it yet...
On another note, HBO MAX debuted today to quite a bit of confused and/or pissed-off customers. Confused because they can't figure out how to get on their HBO MAX app or if they're even eligible. And pissed-off because they mistakenly assumed the HBO MAX app would go live on their Roku or Fire at 3AM today. SONK! HBO still hasn't even hammered out a deal with the two companies that represent 70 fucking % of streaming devices. Jesus, was Quagmire running this shit?
Still, once you get it figured out, it's appears to be a pretty damn good addition to the streaming stable that will slot in nicely between Netflix and Disney+. Tons of movies from CASABLANCA to CRAZY RICH ASIANS. Shows you forgot about ("America Undercover"!) and new shows you can discover. Or you can just binge "The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air" all day. And paying for Netflix/Prime/Hulu/D+/HBOMAX is still way cheaper than paying for cable or satellite. Those fuckers didn't want to give us a la carte. But the Internet bitch-slapped them and gave it to us anyways.