Joel and Ethan Coen have proven themselves skilled at three types of films over the years: thrillers (“Fargo”), comedies (“The Big Lebowski”), and just plain weird (“Barber”). Often the lines between the three are blurred: “The Big Lebowski” has a noirish detective story holding together the jokes, while “Fargo” definitely has points where you laugh.

The Coens had gone for years without making an inferior film, until 2003’s “Intolerable Cruelty” showed signs of strain, while the next year’s “The Ladykillers” was their first outright misfire. Yet just when you thought they might be losing it, they’ve come back strong — Oscar-winning strong — with their latest, “No Country For Old Men,” an adaptation of an extremely hard-boiled Cormac McCarthy novel.

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