Tuesday, July 07, 2009


I found the movie to be uneven as I had a hard time getting involved with the story at the beginning. Well, more than half the movie I was not interested in whatever was going on; but kept watching because performances were good. It is somewhere after half the movie that finally I got interested and started to enjoy the story. So it is not a good sign as I’m really interested in Corporate America stories; but then I also didn’t enjoyed much Michael Clayton the directorial debut film by Tony Gilroy who also wrote and directed this movie. Probably Gilroy’s directorial style is the reason why his films don't move me and easily allow me to get involved with the stories.

The film tells about two spies that decide to leave the CIA (Julia Roberts) and MI6 (Clive Owen) to plan the ultimate con job by infiltrating the counterintelligence of two dwelling corporate CEO’s. The story is told not in sequential order and there are flashbacks to previous years that use a four-split screen as the transition devise. I do not particularly enjoyed the devise and honestly quite annoyed me after the first time it was used as I knew that another plot twist was about to be unveiled and I was not interested in knowing one more twist to this twisted story.

Yes, the story is full of twists that soon enough you know that whatever you’re seeing is not what it seems and even if is not easy to guess what comes next, the problem is that you simply are not interested in knowing or guessing what comes next.

Is when you finally learn what the new product is, that the film becomes engaging as finally you have all the puzzle pieces and whatever plot tricks and twist come after you do not mind, as you are finally engaged with the story.

Some say that actor’s performances do not save the movie, but I tend to disagree as the only reason I kept watching was the pleasure of watching Julia Roberts, Clive Owen, Paul Giamatti and with a too short screen time, Tom Wilkinson.

The film was a commercial flop that worldwide barely collected the production budget which tells me that the Gilroy’s directing abilities are also not reaching wider audiences at least as much as with his script writing abilities, just remember that general audiences loved the Bourne films he wrote. Film tech specs are good, but I really didn’t enjoyed editing; then costumes and some sets are truly spectacular like Tom Wilkinson character office and his fantastic (fake?) bonsai tree. I particularly loved the scene where he’s trimming the bonsai.

Anyway, I believe that the movie is one heist, caper, thriller, romantic comedy, verbal action, and twisted plot film that you could love or hate. Not many will be in the middle of the love-hate range, like me. But if you like the cast, their performances are quite good and then perhaps you will fall in the middle too.


Watch trailer @ Movie On Companion

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