The basic plot of the movie—a person finding and taking something that belongs to bad people and then being chased by said bad people, with a law-enforcement officer on their heels—is not particularly original. The brilliant execution, however, certainly makes it special.
The suspense and unexpected developments, subtle details and astute observations, clever dialogue, and wry humor are expertly combined. Anton Chigurh, played with psychotic intensity by Javier Bardem, is very memorable and an instantly classic movie villain; the rest of the cast is superb.
No Country for Old Men left me thinking about a number of things that I did not figure out while I was watching it, and the movie still lingers in my mind.