Mark Whitacre has worked for lysine developing company ADM for many years and has even found his way into upper management. But nothing has prepared him for the job he is about to undertake - being a spy for the FBI. Unwillingly pressured into working as an informant against the illegal price-fixing activities of his company, Whitacre gradually adopts the idea that he's a true secret agent. But as his incessant lies keep piling up, his world begins crashing down around him.Written by
The Massie Twins
Attorney James Epstein (Tony Hale) has a Mobius Advertising Award in his office. See more »
The film takes place from 1992-1994, yet the cars have Illinois license plates that first appeared in 2001. See more »
You know that orange juice you have every morning? You know what's in that? Corn. And you know what's in the maple syrup you put on your pancakes? You know what makes it taste so good? Corn. And when you're good and help with the trash, you know what makes the big, green bags biodegradable?
[to his son]
Corn *starch*. But Daddy's company didn't come up with that one. DuPont did.
See more »
Prologue: "While this motion picture is based on real events, certain incidents and characters are composites, and dialog has been dramatized. So there." See more »
Director Steven Soderberg delivers a one-of-a-kind gem with "The Informant!", a movie about bipolar conflicts which, itself, is a bipolar conflict.
The main character, Mark Whitacre (played by Matt Damon), is presented as a swiftly-shifting bundle of complexities. One moment he's a boyscout, the next he's a liar and a cheat. You're never quite sure if we're supposed to take him as a good guy or a bad guy.
Similarly, the movie hits us with a bundle of complex, conflicting vibes. Everything about "The Informant!" leads one to expect a comedy, from the exclamation point in the title to the idea of hunky action star Matt Damon playing an overweight corporate dweeb (complete with pedo moustache). The opening titles say "While this motion picture is based on real events, certain incidents and characters are composites, and dialog has been dramatized. So there." And of course we have a truly bizarre soundtrack with several songs featuring the kazoo.
But the odd thing is that it's actually a very serious story, and there aren't really any zingers, knee-slappers or lol-worthy moments. With a darker soundtrack and a few minor editing adjustments, this could easily be a tense thriller like "The Firm".
I'm sure it's no coincidence that it turned out this way. The movie is a statement about conflicts, deceptions and appearances. It makes its point be becoming exactly that which it is portraying: a gestaldt - a complex figure that cannot be seen as the sum of its parts but only as a whole. Take "The Informant!" as a whole and you will see what a clever piece of filmmaking and storytelling it is.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?
| Report this