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‘The Ballad of Buster Scruggs’ trailer: A lot goes down in Coen brothers’ Western

The Netflix film features an ensemble cast that includes Liam Neeson, James Franco, Tom Waits, Brendan Gleeson, and Tim Blake Nelson.

Joel Coen and Ethan Coen have returned to the wild West and the Western for a third time with the anthology film The Ballad of Buster Scruggs. The trailer, released on Wednesdaypaints a colourful picture of the film’s frontiersmen (Liam Neeson, James Franco, Tom Waits, Brendan Gleeson, and Tim Blake Nelson as Buster Scruggs) surviving in the badlands of Nebraska and New Mexico. Dark humour and shootouts seem to be in store, as Buster Scruggs notes, “Things have a way of escalating out here in the West.”

The Ballad of Buster Scruggs.

The film, which was premiered at the 2018 Venice Film Festival in August, consists of six stories written over a 25-year period. The project was picked up by Netflix as a series in August, 2017. It has since been reworked into a film.

Regular collaborator Carter Burwell has scored the film. Bruno Delbonnel, who shot the Coens’ Inside Llewyn Davis (2013), is the cinematographer. Produced by Annapurna Pictures, The Ballad of Buster Scruggs can be streamed on Netflix from November 16.

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What is it about Tom Clancy’s characters?

In the mammoth Jack Ryan series, Tom Clancy creates a compelling protagonist who is as cerebral as he is action-oriented.

Jack Ryan (Ph.D., CPA, KCVO) has had an eventful life. He’s served as a marine, made a fortune worth millions after retirement from the military, earned a doctorate degree in history and beaten up a lot of bad guys along the way. He is a unique action hero, in that he has also been a US Marine, an investment broker, a history teacher, a CIA analyst rising to Deputy Director, National Security Advisor, vice president and eventually the President of the United States of America! This multipotentialite is the protagonist of Tom Clancy’s ‘Ryanverse’ - the term used to refer to the fictional universe he built over 10 books.

Jack Ryan is a complex hero. Before he was beating up bad guys Hollywood-style, he also took a year to learn to walk again and battled painkiller addiction. Before he became the POTUS, jet-setting around the world on official matters, he nursed a crushing phobia of flying. A reluctant president, he nonetheless campaigns for a second term and even has foreign policy named after him - the ‘Ryan Doctrine’- in the tradition of some past US presidents.

Other prominent characters in Ryanverse have equally rollercoaster-like story arcs. John Clark/Kelly - Ryan’s bodyguard - is tragedy’s favourite child, having lost his parents in childhood and later wife. After a whirlwind adventure involving two gunshots and 16 murders, John Kelly ended up having to change his identity to John Clark. He, unlike Ryan, has an unusually strong aversion to drugs.

In the later books, Tom Clancy also devotes space to Jack Ryan Jr, who takes after his father more ways than one. An intelligence analyst by profession, Jack Jr, too, is adept in firearms, close-quarter combat, surveillance and espionage. Jack Jr has a tumultuous relationship with his girlfriend, a CIA operative herself, with whom he parts after she’s revealed to be an indirect intelligence asset.

Ryanverse is replete with scores of characters of all shades - spies, soldiers, terrorists, politicians and criminals - that set in motion events that threaten the course of world order. Clancy’s varied interests and love for research culminates in an action series which also explores history, politics, international relations and the human condition, especially when it comes to loss and grief. All his prominent characters are fighting some personal demons even as they chase down enemies that are equally complex.

Ryanverse’s charismatic leading man has also been the focus of five Hollywood films. Actors Alec Baldwin, Harrison Ford, Ben Affleck and Chris Pine have all portrayed the iconic character at various stages of his career. Now, John Krasinski takes up the role in Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan, playing a gifted-analyst-turned-reluctant-action-hero thrown into a global terrorism conspiracy. Watch the trailer of Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan below.


Jack Ryan is now streaming on Amazon Prime Video. You can watch it here.

This article was produced by the Scroll marketing team on behalf of Amazon Prime Video and not by the Scroll editorial team.