I had long been a fan of Thompson’s book, but it had been years since I last read it and I was excited to see that a movie had been made of it. From the looks of the trailer I thought it had a chance to be a good movie. When I saw it this week I was not disappointed. I loved the way Casey Affleck played the main character, Lou Ford (the ‘me’ in the title) and it was very much how I remembered the book. I felt I had more sympathy for Affleck’s portrayal of Lou Ford than I did when I had initially read the book. Despite the violence that really packs a punch (literally and proverbially), I could not help but feel for the character of Lou. I enjoyed very much the style the movie was made in, but it was Casey Affleck’s portrayal of Lou Ford that haunted me.
Since seeing the movie, I have been rereading the book and I was amazed at how faithful and successful the filmmakers were in adapting book to screen. With minimal changes, the movie captures the book very well. I would encourage anyone who liked this movie to read the book (and vice versa). I would think this would have to be one of the best adaptations of a novel to screen in recent years.
I thought the melange of music that was in the movie worked very well, especially the vintage country tunes of the period. The original score is very effective; understated, sparse and subtle. It lends a touch of sadness to the movie that works nicely. Even the opera arias Lou listens to on the phonograph work well (even though I never thought of Lou as an opera buff), especially when the tune of one of them becomes something he plays on the piano. It all adds quite a melancholy touch.
I recommend this movie. Maybe you will be haunted by Casey Affleck’s portrayal of Lou Ford as I was. I thought it was all very well done and I found myself thinking on it afterwards. So much so that it had me reading the book again. I highly recommend both the book and the movie.