Down by Law is a rare film that belongs in everyone’s collection

30 Dec


There is something special about Jim Jarmusch’s Down by Law that is difficult to put your finger on, but for some reason this black and white film about three strangers ending up in the same New Orleans jail cell is mesmerizing.  Zack (Tom Waits) is an unemployed deejay that ends up driving the wrong car across town one night, Jack (John Lurie) is a low-level pimp that doesn’t have the stomach for violence, and Roberto (Roberto Benigni) is the most unlikely murderer in the French Quarter. The three of them could not be more different and Jarmusch’s story does allow audiences to take a familiar path because there is this awkward tension throughout the film that remains until the very end. Robby Muller’s cinematography is amazing and his ability to capture the confinement of New Orleans during the 1980s is a testament to his craft and vision. Down by Law is a rare independent film that belongs in everyone’s collection.


Chuck’s Grade: A

Adam’s Grade: N/A

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