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Anton is not an agent of Fate nor impersonal determinism. In “No Country for Old Men” the scandal, the relentless terror of the film, is that Anton is responsible for his actions. Otherwise Anton is a hero and the movie is a romance and if you don’t think so then you’re just a rosy-eyed, reality-denying, creampuff.
By making a movie black with injustice the Coen Brothers throw in deep relief the cry of mercy. Even the thinnest whisper of hope shines bright. We see that world, godless and gruesome, we see how helpless justice is, how weak, how frail in the face of unconscionable evil and we deny that world depicted in “No Country” is this world, our world, or at least deny that this is the way the world should be. By showing us that terrible world, that is no country for anybody, we are driven to affirm that this world is worthy to save.
The movie does not expect us to shrug our shoulders after the movie ends and slink off into despair, it asks us to look for what the world is missing and add it here, because everybody knows the world has meaning. We just have to get at what the writing means.