TGB Breakdown Ep 5: Coen Bros' A Serious Man (Guest: Matt Patches)

June 29, 2012

TGB Breakdown Ep 5: Coen Bros' A Serious Man

On this episode of The Golden Briefcase Breakdown, Tim & Jeremy are again joined by Matt Patches of and Operation Kino (just on TGB #115 talking dark comedy) to go over a spoiler-filled discussion on the Coen Brothers' A Serious Man, released in late 2009 after debuting at TIFF. The main purpose of Breakdown episodes is to to ponder, discuss and challenge the films that we feel often need more than just a simple review. We breakdown the film to discuss plots and theories in order to better understand the director's vision and hopefully challenge our listeners at home to re-evaluate the way they watch cinema.

Extra episodes of TGB Breakdown will be arriving about every month, and will appear here in addition to all of our regular weekly Golden Briefcase episodes. Beware - every episode of TGB Breakdown will contain MASSIVE SPOILERS for the film in discussion (this one is for A Serious Man). You've been WARNED!

Download Breakdown #5 or Listen Now:

Latest Golden Briefcase: The Darker Side of Comedy (Guest: Matt Patches)

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The Movie:

A Serious Man (2009) - Directed by Joel & Ethan Coen

Our Guest:

Matt Patches: @Misterpatches

The Golden Briefcase is:

Tim Buel: @timbuel
Jeremy Kirk: @JeremyKKirk

Thank you for listening to TGB Breakdown. Have a film you want to hear go through the Breakdown? Shoot us an email to or a voicemail (805-416-2131) and we would be glad to include it in a future edition! Any other feedback, compliments, discussion, even hate mail, can be sent to us via email.

Find more posts: Discuss, Golden Briefcase, Podcasts



Hip-Hip-Hooray Its (BONUS) Golden Briefcase Day!!! Thanks guys!

DAVIDPD on Jun 29, 2012


Please do one of these Breakdowns for our buddy John Carpenter's THE THING. I would love to hear Jeremy and Tim's thoughts on it.

DAVIDPD on Jun 29, 2012


GOLDEN BROTHERS Strange I love ALL works of this two

Ehsan Davodi on Jun 30, 2012


Great episode, but now that I understand the movie a bit better I'm not so sure I like what it's trying to tell us.. Anyways, I'd love an episode on David Lynch's Inland Empire I think if any movie needs a breakdown that's the one 🙂

Davide Coppola on Jul 1, 2012


They told modern tale of biblical figure called : JOB Story was about patience & fortitude but with dark comic moments. Do you remind first sequence that Jewish Hakham came to that room in snowy dark night? That was good prologue for occurrence of next events. They are Jewish Davide. Genius Brothers. Always they do impressive works. Totally agree with you about Lynch.

Ehsan Davodi on Jul 1, 2012


Yes, exactly. I think they have a negative view of God or I don't know much about Jewish religion, but it seems like a pessimistic film (and I'm sure that's what they wanted). I guess I just never thought of the movie that way before (this episode), which is eye opening and sad at the same time..

Davide Coppola on Jul 1, 2012


Oh wait....

Bobo_Vision on Jul 1, 2012


Could someone please tell me what Mr Patches says at around the 10:30 mark where he says "kiotik." Is he referring to the word "chaotic" or am I missing something out here? Appreciate any reply. Thanks

John on Jul 4, 2012


Good discussion, but I think you guys misunderstand the title of the film. It's Sy Ableman who is the "serious man", as shown in his eulogy ("How could such a serious man simply disappear?"), while Larry is not. As someone who is totally in control, important to his community and claims to "know what's going on", a "serious man" is what Larry aspires to be, but not what he is. I wrote my dissertation on the film, which is probably why I'm being so pedantic...

Ryan Hogan on Aug 23, 2012

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