Based on the novel by David Baldacci, Absolute Power is about the ruthlessness of people in power. The President believes that everything he does is beyond reproach, including an affair or two. That leads to murder and everyone around him is involved. There is only one witness, a thief named Luther Whitney. They are sure he'll talk, but when? The Secret Service is determined to keep him quiet, but catching a thief isn't always easy. Written by
Kristie Murray <email@example.com>
It's not for everyone, but it's compelling enough to me personally.
Luther Whitney is a professional thief, he also happens to be exceptional at it. During a carefully planned burglary at the home of wealthy Walter Sullivan, Whitney is disturbed to hear voices coming from outside the room he is in. Hiding in a secret room he observes from behind a two-way mirror the cheating wife of Sullivan with her lover for the night. Whitney is further startled to find that the man in the company of Mrs Sullivan is none other than the current president of the United States, Allen Richmond. He is then horrified to witness the couples union getting out of control, Richmond starting to get far too heavy handed with the lady in question. Things spiral out of control and during the fight Mrs Sullivan goes to stab the President with a paper knife, thus giving the entering secret service agents no choice but to gun her down. Sensing a political scandal, the agents and Richmond's Chief Of Staff, Gloria Russell decide to cover the incident up. Whitney, after making his escape, doesn't know what to do, who's going to believe a renowned thief, but crucially, will he be allowed to live if he comes forward? Dastardly goings on and government cover ups are merely part of what is going on in the search for Absolute Power.
Absolute Power is a fine film, but I'm a little biased because I really like the pacing of the picture and more importantly, I like the plot. It's true that the film fails to capitalise on its first hour set up, we are brought into Whitney's world and given reminders of dodgy doings that blight so many countries political machinations, but then director Clint Eastwood and his team fall in to the trap of adding strands that merely alter the viewers attention span, thus taking us away from what was a concrete and wholly engrossing plot arc. But with a truly diamond cast of professionals in the piece, the film manages to stay the good side of good, tho the ending is one that is sure to be a divisive one for any prospective first time viewers. Eastwood stars as Whitney and is joined by Gene Hackman (President Allen Richmond), Ed Harris, Laura Linney, Scott Glenn, Dennis Haysbert, Judy Davis and E.G. Marshall. William Goldman adapts from David Baldacci's popular novel, and Eastwood's direction is the usual steady professional job that he would further enhance down the line with the likes of Mystic River and Million Dollar Baby.
Should have been a truly great political based thriller/drama, but as it is, I settle for it being a way above average one that has far too many good points to ever see it as being below average or bad. 7/10
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