I’m more of a casual fan of the Coen Brothers than someone who foams at the mouth every time they produce something new. I loved “Fargo,” “No Country for Old Men” and “The Hudsucker Proxy” but a lot of the time — “The Ladykillers,” “O Brother Where Art Thou?,” “Intolerable Cruelty” and “A Serious Man” among them — I often feel like I’m missing out on the joke. There’s an elitist, hipster quality to the works of the Coens, and darned if their next movie, “Inside Llewyn Davis,” doesn’t appear more of the same.
“Inside Llewyn Davis” is about folk music, specifically a New York singer/songwriter played by Oscar Isaac (“For Greater Glory,” “Won’t Back Down”) who is looking to break into the biz right around the time Bob Dylan abandoned folk and took to rock ‘n’ roll. The difference between Davis and Dylan, of course, being that Davis travels with a guitar case and a cat (says John Goodman in the trailer, “Folk singer with a cat. Is that part of your act? Every time you play a C-major he puke a hairball?”).
There’s a curiously dreamlike appearance to “Inside Llewyn Davis,” and it does have a qualified cast (Carey Mulligan, Justin Timberlake, Garrett Hedlund). Since the last two Coen movies were nominated for Best Picture, here’s betting the Academy pricks up their ears once more when “Llewyn” is released this December.