FI · Films · Four Stars · Review

Ides of March (2011)

Directed By: George Clooney
Written By: George Clooney (Screenplay), Grant Heslov (Screenplay), Beau Willimon (Play and Screenplay)
Main Cast: George Clooney, Ryan Gosling, Phillip Seymour Hoffman and Paul Giamatti.
Storyline: This is a film about an ambitious press secretary who continuously works harder than most to get his candidate to win presidency. Before long, however he gets caught in the middle of back-room politics that ends in a high-end scandall that has the power to ruin everything…
FOUR OUT OF FIVE STARS ****
When it comes to this film, it is definitely a film that brings you to your knees. It may not be the blockbuster of the year and it will not be everyone’s cup of tea but it certainly has that something in it that makes it worth watching. Right from the very beginning of this film, you feel hooked. And it has one of those fun ploys where you think that you’ve read the trailer wrong for the film before it zooms out and reveals what is actually happening. Honestly, the beginning of the film truly brings the mood of the film on its head and shows the audience what to expect out of it.
Unfortunately, after this moment, the film starts to get a little slow as it builds up the story but this is one of those inevitable things that will happen to a movie that is representing something so very complicated. It would be nearly impossible to ever make a film about politics be anything but slow and slightly boring because politics are slow and boring. But the beginning is necessary to understanding the rest of the film, it is necessary to set up how the rest of the story will progress.
That being said, even with the slow start, the film really starts to get good in the middle. With a few moments that have you pulling back on your previous thoughts, it is a film that really makes you think about the way life works and the way politics runs. In all honesty, however, it is difficult to really pinpoint exactly why this film deserves four stars and this review has actually taken me a fair few days to write for this particular reason but what is known, is that it does deserve them. It pulls you into the story to the point that you’re almost literally sitting ‘on the edge of your seat’ with twists and turns that you would never have expected.
In fact, one of the most powerful messages in the film is probably the best way to describe why this film is one that is a must watch. You may not know everything about the film, you may not think that it’s a very good film but if it is and you didn’t see it, could you live with it? Is missing the film worth the risk?
With all of that being said, if the story alone cannot capture your attention, the acting and actors may just be able to pull you in. Ryan Gosling once more performs brilliantly in his role and really makes the character believable while pulling emotions out of the hat that really seem to come from nowhere. Along with Gosling, George Clooney is once again stunning in his performance although it is often difficult to see him as anything other than Clooney and so when he steps up to the podium to run for president… well, it’s quite a weird phenomenon that is for sure. Paul Giamatti and Phillip Seymour Hoffman also perform incredibly well which helps to bring this story to life as it is impossible to think that this couldn’t be real.
So, if you can sit down and ignore all of the political jargon that goes in one ear and out the other and if you can enjoy a good storyline when one is given you while appreciating brilliant acting and filming then Ides of March is definitely a film that you should go and watch. But don’t take my word for it, just go and watch for yourself!
Faye

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