The film Oh Brother Whereart Thou was created by Joel and Ethan Coen. The film is a parody of Homers great tale The Odyssey. The movie was set in the deep south and was framed by a fantastic mix of music known as old English balance, or better yet, known today as bluegrass. .
The Coen brothers contrasted the character Odysseus with their own version of Ulysses. Ulysses was an ill tempered man who stole and that no one had aspired to be like, yet Odysseus was a man that was filled with many aspiring traits. He embodied the ideals Homeric Greeks aspired to obtain: manly valor, loyalty, intelligence, and piety. Piety meant that one acknowledged that the gods were in control of their fate, were respectful of them, and acknowledged that they needed the Gods help. Ulysses on the other hand did not believe in god and felt that he did not need gods help. .
The film opened with three convicts escaping a chain gang. Ulysses was portrayed as the group's leader and following closely behind him were Naove who proved to be funny, and the distrustful Pete. The Coen brothers portrayed Ulysses as a man who was on a quest to find his way home to his wife and children after escaping from prison, much like Odysseus in The Odyssey who set out to find his way home after being released from prison due to Athena persuading Zeus to let him go home. Ulysses was shown to be a man who was not well liked and lacked intelligence unlike Odysseus who was a legendary figure with more than his fair share of brains and muscle. These two characters were much alike in the fact that both made mistakes, got into troublesome situations, and lost their tempers. Ulysses had tricked his companions into helping him find his way home by telling them that they were searching for a buried treasure. .
Ulysses wife no longer wishes to have him as a husband since he was in prison and perhaps did not want her children to know their father was in prison so she told them that their father had been run over by a train.