What’s difficult about making this list is finding a balance …
In his later years, the novelist Cormac McCarthy has circled like a vulture around the theme of death, specifically its inevitable grip on humanity. No Country for Old Men and The Road presented very different worlds, both filled with men trying desperately to withstand the inexorable hand of the reaper, and eventually realizing that there wasn’t much left but to give into what comes for us all. Such an existential fear is, perhaps unsurprisingly, the foundation of McCarthy’s newest foray, his screenplay for the crime thriller The Counselor. Its director is the prolific Ridley Scott, and its cast is impressively stacked, but this is a McCarthy story through and through, which is mostly heartening news.
Various directors take very differing stances when it comes to the ongoing threat of executive meddling. This, of course, is when the studio moneymen stop what you’re doing and tell you that what you’ve made will simply not cut it at the box office, that key demographics that their marketing department has been stringently working on (usually in the form of charts) will dislike your movie.