9 items from 2011
The Ides of March is George Clooney's fourth film as director and his second dealing specifically with politics, and his career as a publicly engaged film-maker now inevitably invites comparison with that of Robert Redford. Goodnight, and Good Luck, Clooney's movie about ethical communications and the confrontation in 1953 between liberal broadcaster Ed Murrow and witch-hunting cold warrior Joe McCarthy, is his equivalent of Quiz Show, Redford's movie on burgeoning corruption in the media in the 1950s. The Ides of March is his version of The Candidate, Redford's 1972 picture about democratic politics and the sacrifices and compromises involved in winning elections. The title from Plutarch and Shakespeare is intended to make us think about the scheming and backstabbing that accompanied the assassination of Julius Caesar on 15 March 44Bc, and perhaps to suggest that things were ever thus. »
- Philip French
Director: George Clooney
Running Time: 101 Minutes
Synopsis: An idealistic staffer (Gosling) for a newbie presidential candidate (Clooney) gets a crash course on dirty politics during his stint on the campaign trail. Based on the play by Beau Willimon.
Acting superstar George Clooney has taken to directing in the same way the likes of Clint Eastwood or Mel Gibson has, effortlessly juggling all forms of film making with a few bumps along the way (Leatherheads) but making some great entertainment. Crafting films that make a statement and tell an interesting tale in the process. His previous directorial efforts, Confessions Of A Dangerous Mind and Good Night And Good Luck were superb pieces of cinema that told both fascinating as well as gripping stories. Clooney was able to get incredible »
- Craig Hunter
20 Political Movie Quotes'The Candidate' (1972)
Bill McKay (Robert Redford): [after winning the election] "What do we do now?"
Moneyball, the crackerjack true-life baseball movie starring Brad Pitt as the quirky, embattled, visionary Oakland A’s general manager Billy Beane (a name born to be a movie character), took a lot of people, including me, by surprise. A baseball drama with a star as big as Brad Pitt might have seemed like the perfect summer movie, so you had to wonder a bit why it wasn’t one. Then too, given the film’s late-September, quasi-no-man’s-land release date, it didn’t exactly sound like awards material either (though people have already started to talk about it in that way). Baseball movies, »
- Owen Gleiberman
In the 10 years since the September 11 terrorist attacks, film directors have responded in myriad ways. Peter Bradshaw charts the rise and fall of the 9/11 movie
At the Venice film festival last week, George Clooney unveiled his new backstairs political drama, The Ides of March, about a Democratic presidential candidate getting bogged down in compromise, backstabbing and the dark political arts. Clooney said that he could conceivably have completed the film before now, but President Obama had been doing too well, and therefore the time wasn't right.
Perhaps Clooney was being serious and perhaps he wasn't. But the remark typifies the dwindling of the memory of 9/11 in Hollywood cinema. The Obama presidency, ushered in by the catastrophe of the Bush reign, is now perceived to be in trouble, and this enables a prominent Hollywood liberal to make the kind of savvy, ahistorically pessimistic political movie that could have been produced at »
- Peter Bradshaw
"A smart, confident kick start to what looks like being a notably strong Venice film festival, The Ides of March showcases George Clooney, its director, co/writer and joint lead actor, back in the politically committed mood that spawned Syriana and Good Night, and Good Luck." The Telegraph's David Gritten: "A political thriller exploring themes of loyalty, ambition and the gap between public ideals and private fallibility, it engages the brain within the context of a solid entertainment." 4 out of 5 stars.
At the Playlist, Oliver Lyttelton sets it up: "Stephen Myers (Ryan Gosling) is something of a wunderkind. Still in his 20s, he’s a senior adviser to the campaign of Democratic primary candidate Governor Mike Morris (Clooney). Morris seems to be the real deal, a once-in-a-lifetime kind of candidate, and Myers had never been more fired up, particularly with mentor Paul Zara (Philip Seymour Hoffman) at the helm, and »
Article by Jim Batts, Dana Jung, and Tom Stockman
Lee Marvin rose through the ranks of movie stardom as a character actor, delivering mostly villainous supporting turns in many films before finally graduating to leading roles. Regardless of which side of the law he was on however, he projected a tough-as-nails intensity and a two-fisted integrity which elevated even the slightest material. Born February 19, 1924, in New York City, Marvin quit high school to enter the Marine Corps and while serving in the South Pacific was badly wounded in battle when a machine gun nest shot off part of his buttocks and severed his sciatic nerve. He spent a year in recovery before returning to the U.S. where »
- Movie Geeks
An elegant life of Robert Redford gets to the heart of an enigmatic, Gatsbyesque charmer who dreamed of freedom, honesty and social fulfilment
Actor, director, producer, conservationist, political activist and patron of independent cinema, Robert Redford has lived a formidably energetic life while continuing to look like the diffident, tousle-haired all-American boy next door. He'll be 75 on 18 August, and his latest film as director, The Conspirator, a study of the fallout from the assassination of President Lincoln, is as ambitious and serious as anything he's done.
The Irish writer Michael Feeney Callan has known this enigmatic, Gatsbyesque charmer for 14 years, interviewed him at length, spoken to some 300 witnesses and had access to his diaries and notebooks. Callan is thus in the best possible position to answer a key question that's been sung on family occasions by Redford's children these past few years to a tune by Andrew Lloyd Webber: »
- Philip French
"This month marks the 35th anniversary of the release of Alan J Pakula's film version of Carl Bernstein and Bob Woodward's nonfiction book, All the President's Men," begins Marc Savlov in the Austin Chronicle. "It was one of the best of a handful of films in the crusading reporter subgenre and one that not only has withstood the test of time but also, rewatched today, provokes this thought: 'What the hell has happened to the Fourth Estate?'"
In a sidebar, Savlov notes that the film will be screening this afternoon at the Lbj Library Auditorium. Thursday sees two panel discussions, "Could the media break a story like Watergate today?," with Woodward, Bernstein, Peter Baker of the New York Times, Dana Priest of the Washington Post and Mark Miller of the Texas Tribune, and then later the same day, a discussion of the film with Woodward, Bernstein and Robert Redford. »
9 items from 2011
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