Monday, April 20, 2009

We pay to train them, and you get paid to kill them.

I saw State of Play yesterday, and I really liked it. The film is an intelligent thriller, with good twists and turns, as well as some excellent performances. Russell Crowe is good as usual as a newspaper reporter who helps uncover a big national scandal. Rachel McAdams, always charming, does very well as the newspaper blogger who works with Crowe. The brilliant Helen Mirren does standout work as the editor, and very strong supporting turns by Jeff Daniels, Robin Wright Penn, and the always fun Jason Bateman complement the ensemble. The surprising real star for me, however, is Ben Affleck, who does some of his best work here as an idealistic congressman who gets in over his head trying to expose a military cover-up.

Director Kevin MacDonald, who made the exquisite The Last King of Scotland, really captures some great tension and suspense, and the plot zigzags around, revealing new layers and secrets.

And as the son of a newspaper man, I also appreciated the shout-out to the real newspaper, and the closing credits really do a nice job paying homage to this industry.

State of Play is clever, entertaining, and suspenseful, and I recommend it for a good ride at the movies.


At 10:17 PM, Blogger Mycket posited...

I am glad to hear something positive about it. About 15 seconds into the very first trailer I saw, I thought "This seems familiar...Dammit! We always feel like we need to steal good British stuff. AND BEN AFFLECK?! DAMMIT." I LOVED the British Miniseries and am hesitant to see this because I don't know how they crammed all of that into one movie without significant plot changes. The original was about global warming, Hollywood's new favorite pet project and I am so disappointed they changed it to revolve around the clusterf* that is the current state of the military. I am tired of hearing that from HolierthanthouWood.
Where was I? Oh yes. I am glad you liked it. Maybe I'll reconsider since you always have impeccable taste.

At 5:12 PM, Blogger matt posited...

wait wait wait.

ben affleck? good?

give me a few minutes to wrap my mind around this terribly inconceivable concept.


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