The Big Lebowski (1998)

Rating: B-

Dir: Joel Coen
Star: Jeff Bridges, John Goodman, Julianne Moore, Steve Buscemi

What is it with the Coens and kidnapping? Raising Arizona, Blood Simple, Fargo and now this one; all with abductions at their heart. Here, a case of mistaken identity leads slacker-bowler Bridges into a strange world, where a millionaire’s wife may have been kidnapped by cricket-bat wielding, nihilist Kraftwerk clones. Or then again, maybe not. Although still not quite up to the glorious, inventive heights of The Hudsucker Proxy, it’s significantly better than the vastly over-rated Fargo: Bridges plus pals Goodman and Buscemi are great characters who have more to offer than saying “Ya” repeatedly. Perhaps a little too slack and self-indulgent for its own good, and some facets are never developed as fully as they could be i.e. the bowling tournament, yet still as quirky and off-the-wall as you’d expect with some great moments. And the rest isn’t too shoddy either.