Archives for posts with tag: Philip Seymour Hoffman

“A Most Wanted Man” (2014) is a pretty good spy movie that all of a sudden becomes a really good spy movie – which is exactly how really good spy movies are supposed to happen. It takes place in Germany, and the main characters are Germans, but they’re played by American actors speaking English with German accents (don’t worry – it all works somehow). Philip Seymour Hoffman plays a spy who’s seen it all. Rachel McAdams plays a lawyer who’s in over her head. The city of Hamburg plays a supporting role and reminds us American moviewatchers just how different Europe looks.

You know those movies where people are talking, but they don’t sound like they’re talking, they sound like their reading out loud? “State and Main” (2000) is one of those movies. It’s not a bad movie, per se (Right there. They would say something like “per se” in this movie). When movie people make movies about people making a movie, it’s never quite as funny as the movie people think. The movie promos make a big deal about how it’s “A Film by David Mamet.” He’s made some great movies (“Glengarry Glen Ross”). This is not one of those movies.

This was probably the wrong week for me to rent “The Ides of March” (2011). I just finished erasing 48 robocall voicemails from a bunch of intellectually and/or morally bankrupt jackasses hustling my vote like a bunch of dollar whores. And the snob in socialists’ clothing they’re running against isn’t any better. Forgive me if I can’t warm up to a beautifully filmed, sharply written and well acted movie about the craven process of electing a president. It’s like watching the best instructional film ever made on clubbing baby seals. Its quality is obscured by the repulsiveness of the subject.