Wednesday, October 12, 2011

The Ides of March

In case you haven't heard, there is a lot of Oscar hype over The Ides of March. I personally think it's just because this has been such a bad year for movies in general. Many of you may be of the mind that the Oscars only ever like stupid movies that no one watches, and you are certainly entitled to your own opinion. I would personally like to encourage you to watch the movies that are Oscar-worthy this year. Don't complain about no one watching them if you are one of the ones that is not watching them. With that being said, I went to watch this movie because I wanted to see whether it really was Oscar-worthy. The cast is obviously star-studded, and, with Clooney directing, it promised to at least have a brain. The Oscar hype set my expectations high.

The trailer made it clear that there was some kind of something that was going on behind the curtains with The Ides of March, but I must say that I was surprised at how much this changed things. I thought this was just going to be a simple story. Turns out, I was very very wrong. I certainly didn't see all of the twists and turns coming. The plot is very complex and really shows how screwed up politics can be (In case you didn't know, they don't always tell the truth). There were a few awkward moments in the film, but, overall, it was complex, original, and fun.

Best Scene: There is one giant twist in the movie that sort of lights ten billion small fires. I obviously won't tell you what happens, but it's pretty cool.

The cast of this film was amazing. It was very hard for me to find glitches as far as the cast is concerned. Clooney did a great job of directing, but he did an even better job of letting the rest of the cast take the spotlight. The movie wasn't really about the presidential candidates, but rather the people behind the scenes. I am a huge West Wing fan, and this movie is kind of like the drama of that entire series rolled into two hours. If you are pretty dumb in the area of politics, you might think these characters a bit dramatic. Unfortunately, politicians have many secrets and plenty of drama, so do not be fooled. Phillip Seymour Hoffman redeemed himself after a horrible performance in Moneyball, and Paul Giamatti was great as well.

Best Character: Ryan Gosling was brilliant as Stephen Meyers, a smart, savvy, young campaign manager. It wasn't obvious in the previews, but Gosling is THE main character. I rarely think that the main character does a good enough job to be recognized, but Gosling did phenomenal.

Worst Character: The only character that seemed out of place was this random intern that they threw into the end of the movie. I think she was supposed to be a symbol of how easily people can be replaced, especially in politics. I'm not big on having to interpret what's going on in a movie, so I didn't much care for that.

This was one of the most unpredictable movies that I have seen in a long time. Also, it has been a while since I have seen a performance as good as that of Ryan Gosling's, in a lead role at least. The problem is that I didn't get an Oscar feel while watching. If you haven't noticed, 2011 has been a year lacking in Oscar-worthy movies. I think people are just so anxious to see a good, smart film that they got all worked up over this one. Don't get me wrong, it was very good, but I don't think it deserves an Oscar nom. It did not greatly exceed my expectations, but it didn't disappoint. If you like politics or know nothing about politics, go watch this movie! You will either be entertained or learn something or both. I give The Ides of March 3.57 out of 5 stars.

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