What must be done
directed by Andrew Dominik
The scene: In a titular scene of Andrew Dominik's masterful picture, we observe the fear, anxiety and sadness in a form of almost a dance that is happening right before our eyes. With beautiful "What must be done" by Nick Cave and Warren Ellis playing in the background, treacherous Robert Ford (Casey Affleck ) and reluctant Charley Ford (Sam Rockwell, in one of his finest performances) prepare to kill Jesse James (Brad Pitt).
James can clearly sense what is about to happen - he looks at his daughter through the window, focusing on every little detail as Robert and Charley try to compose themselves, wordlessly - Robert clearly battles with an idea of killing his friend and mentor, while Charley already shows the signs of immense sadness and despair he will experience after committing the murder, as he raises his armed hand with much resignation, in an apologetic way.
As Jesse says "Don't that picture look dusty?" and approaches the picture of the horse, he sees Robert aiming at him with a gun in its reflection. If Jesse didn't turn his back to him, who knows if Robert would shoot, if he was able to see his face. When the shot is fired, that beautiful, subtle, incredibly orchestrated scene erupts with violence and blood in a matter of seconds as Jesse is shot, hits his head on the picture and dies. He turns from the living hero into cold, lifeless corpse in a matter of seconds and the break the scene provides - from dreamlike, slow and delicate movement prior to the shot to the frenzy after it, only amplifies it.
Previously in the series: