A rich and successful lawyer, the Counselor, is about to get married to his fiancée but soon becomes entangled in a complex drug plot with a middle-man known as Westray. The plan ends up taking a horrible twist and he must protect himself and his soon to be bride as the truth of the drug business is uncovered and targets are eliminated. Written by
On August 20, 2012, Ridley Scott halted production of the film due to his brother Tony Scott's death. He canceled that week's shoot in order to travel to Los Angeles to be with his brother's family. Scott returned to London to resume production on September 3, 2012. See more »
When the two policemen approach the truck they stop their car in the middle of the road. At the end of the scene the police car is on the right side of the road. See more »
Drowns under the weight of cryptic dialogue and abstract storytelling.
With three of his novels being adapted into critically acclaimed films,
Cormac McCarthy has opted to try his hand at screen writing, and the
fruits of his labor can be seen in The Counselor. Directed by Ridley
Scott, the film stars Michael Fassbender as a high-priced lawyer who
decides to dabble in something a bit less than legal in order to make
some extra cash.
Against the advice of associates Reiner (Javier Bardem) and Westray
(Brad Pitt), The Counselor (whose name is never mentioned) has somehow
gotten himself involved in the drug trafficking business, although the
film remains ambiguous about the specifics. Motivated by the love of a
beautiful woman (Penelope Cruz) and the desire to maintain the
lifestyle he's enjoyed for so long, he never takes into account the
sort of consequences he may be subjected to, should things not go
according to plan.
As the trailers for the film make abundantly clear, things do not, in
fact, go according to plan - at least, that's what we're led to
believe, since the details of The Counselor's involvement in said plan
are never actually revealed. Despite being warned about this scenario
from the very beginning, by nearly every other character in the film,
The Counselor remains inexplicably shocked and stunned when things
begin to unravel.
Ridley Scott's latest directorial effort is peppered with lengthy
scenes that find The Counselor engaged in conversations with other
characters as they try to impart kernels of wisdom, truth and
philosophy. Unfortunately, first-time screenwriter McCarthy fails to
realize that he's not writing a novel here. Despite the brilliance of
his literary works, he doesn't take into account the fact that living,
breathing people rarely speak in monologues, and there's scarcely an
ounce of naturally delivered dialogue in any of these exchanges.
Indeed, if you watch closely you can actually see the actors struggling
to wrap their heads (and mouths) around these complex conversations
that are surely meant to sound intelligent, but come across as anything
but. It's hard to find fault with the talented cast, but when working
with such messy material, it's difficult to be at the top of your game.
Despite the script's shortcomings, The Counselor provides enough
intrigue to keep things moving along for about 90 minutes or so. The
problem, of course, is that the film grinds to a complete and utter
halt with another half hour still left in the tank, and the final 30
minutes is some of the most excruciatingly boring cinema I've seen this
year. It's a frustrating and befuddling experience, and I left the
theater wondering exactly what the hell had happened, both in front of
the camera and behind it.
-- Brent Hankins, www.nerdrep.com
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