Vicenarian Richard travels to Thailand and finds himself in possession of a strange map. Rumours state that it leads to a solitary beach paradise, a tropical bliss. Excited and intrigued, he sets out to find it.
Roger Ferris is a CIA operative in the Middle East; Ed Hoffman is his control at Langley. Cynicism is everywhere. In Amman, Roger works with Hani Salaam, Jordan's head of security, whose only dictum is "Don't lie to me." The Americans are in pursuit of a cleric who leads a group placing bombs all over Europe. When Hani rebukes Ed's demand that Jordan allow the Americans to use one of Jordan's double agents, Roger and Ed hatch a plan to bring the cleric to them. The plan is complicated by its being a secret from Hani and by Roger's attraction to a local nurse. Satellites and cell phones, bodies and lies: modern warfare.Written by
For Manchester Scenes (filmed in a gritty and real American slum), actual English "police line" tape was used. Its distinctive blue and white coloration contrasts with US-style police tape which is yellow with black text. Comparison was easy because occasional stray bits of American police line tape from past actual crime scenes were among the real neighborhood's windblown street debris littering the edges of the filming area. See more »
The Islamophobic tropes in this movie are almost too many to mention, but one that sticks out is when Ferris (who is allegedly versed in Arabic and Muslim culture) asks "why would he deal with infidels?" about a successful businessman they eventually frame as a high ranking terrorist. There has never been any prohibition in Islam of having business dealings with non believers, and throughout history Muslims have done so as a matter of course. See more »
I and the public know what all schoolchildren learn, those to whom evil is done, do evil in return. - W.H. Auden
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Does trust go out the window in the time of war? It's the question the audience may ponder during the course of this film where it seems that even those on the same team aren't always working in each other's best interests.
Leonard DiCaprio stars as Roger Farris, a CIA agent who is seeking to capture a terrorist in Jordan. Farris is in constant contact with Ed Hoffman (Russell Crowe), a US government official with no respect or time for Farris' calls to work with Jordanian officials to solve their case.
After a mishap jeopardizes Farris lead, he teams up with Hani (Mark Strong), a charismatic and enigmatic, Jordanian covert operations official.
What follows is the push and pull between the three men's methodology on capturing the terrorist.
While "Body of Lies" is definitely a product of a post-911 world, it does not feel like the numerous post-911 political thrillers such as "Syriana" due to it's subtlety. It's more of spy thriller with a cautionary tale on America's foreign relations mixed in.
One minor complaint is the pacing of the film. There are a few stops and starts as Farris deals with the reality of the effectiveness of his enemies. As he adjusts his plans it feels as if the story starts back from the top.
But the performances are excellent from DiCaprio; who is the only actor his age who could tackle this role with the any type credibility and depth. Crowe and Strong, down to Golshifteh Farahani as Aisha, the nurse DiCaprio is drawn to and especially Oscar Isaac who plays Bassam, DiCaprio's go-to guy for information.
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