top of page

Cinema & The Arts as Sermons: "O Brother Where Art Thou" Meaning

Updated: Jul 25, 2023

"O Brother Where Art Thou" Meaning

"On the surface, O Brother Where Art Thou?'s meaning may be overshadowed by its Three Stooges like comedy, but if you look a little deeper you will find a story about power and light." from the video introduction.

The 2000 movie "O Brother Where Art Thou is one of the Cohens Brother's best movies. And it is rich in symbolism and meaning. If you have not seen the movie I encourage you to do so. - Andy

10 Hidden Details You Missed In O Brother, Where Art Thou?

O Brother, Where Art Thou is one of the Coen Brothers' greatest films but it has many hidden details that fans may have missed. Here are the 10 best.

10 Opening Quote

The film forgoes the typical narration you might usually find in a Coen Brothers movie but does start with a quote that reads, "O Muse! Sing in me, and through me tell the story of that man skilled in the ways of contending, a wanderer, harried for years on end …"

The quote is the opening line from Homer's Odyssey, the story of a warrior's long journey home. The Coen Brothers based this film on the storyline of that epic tale. Though, in typical Coen Brothers fashion, they admitted that neither of them has actually read the epic poem and just know it through pop culture... from the article: 10 Hidden Details You Missed In O Brother, Where Art Thou?

The Soggy Bottom Boys Against the Ku Klux Klan - "O Brother, Where Art Thou?"

Video from Screen Bites

"During the night, the trio find out that the Ku Klux Klan has captured Tommy so they decide to rescue him, despite the consequences." from video introduction.

Christianity, Where Art Thou: Examining Religion, Mythology, and Mysticism in Film

July 2, 2019 by Essay Writer

“What do you sell?” asks Delmar, leaning in to the one-eyed salesman. “The word of God, which, let me tell you, there is damn good money in during these times of woe and want.” The Bible has been misused, misquoted, and misrepresented by history’s finest enemies. The Crusaders, for instance, would chant “God Wills It” as they raped, pillaged, and plundered entire villages. It’s also been used as a source of wealth and fortune, as seen above with the Bible salesman. Abuse of the Bible and Christianity is not a new concept in our world, and the Christianity we see and know today is very different from Christianity 100 years ago, let alone from when it started. We have always mystified religion and become comfortable treating it more like mythology than theology – that is, treating it more like epics and legends of supernatural beings than the actual practice of believing in and worshipping a God. The film O Brother, Where Art Thou? shines a light on the comparisons between Christianity and mythology, specifically Homer’s epic The Odyssey. The Coen brothers’ film is riddled with evidence of both texts, some more obvious than others. We begin with our protagonist, Ulysses Everett McGill (George Clooney). While Odysseus is the protagonist of Homer’s Greek myth, his Latin name was none other than Ulysses. Not only do the two protagonists share names, but their spouses do as well – Odysseus has Penelope, and Everett has Penny. Everett is a quick-witted, clever man, but uses such devices to mask a strong sense of arrogance that serves as his downfall. He makes it very clear from the beginning that he’s a bit of a hypocrite when it comes to religion. He ridicules his two comrades for pursuing baptism, yet quotes the Bible when one of them shows signs of negativity. The ridiculing is with good reason, though – the men are alone in an old cemetery and are suddenly overcome by a mass of men and women in all white, seeming somewhat hypnotized and heavily drawn to the water. When they arrive, they form two lines and take turns being baptized. Delmar runs to the front of the line, is dunked underwater by the preacher, and comes back to the men repeating what sounds like a check list one would spout off to prove they were a believer. “Well that’s it, boys. I been redeemed. The preacher done washed away all my sins and transgressions. It’s the straight and narrow from here on out. And heaven everlasting’s my reward!”.. from the essay: Christianity, Where Art Thou: Examining Religion, Mythology, and Mysticism in Film

10 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page