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Rated R · 101 minutes · 2011
"Republicans hate the beginning of the movie, Democrats hate the end," George Clooney recently told USA Today. "So we're good." That dichotomy goes a long way toward explaining why this political drama—adapted by Clooney and his frequent collaborator Grant Heslov (Good Night, and Good Luck) from a play by Beau Willimon—proves engaging and even personal despite a story line that can only be described as trite. Clooney stars as an idealistic Pennsylvania governor mounting an insurgent campaign for the presidency, and his frank campaign rhetoric is a progressive's wet dream; you just know it's the platform Clooney would run on himself if he ever got into politics. Unfortunately, the bare-knuckle tactics of a Democratic primary battle have a way of dragging everyone down into the mud, and the movie ends on a note of utter hopelessness. Clooney directed with an actor's appetite for vivid star turns, and he certainly gets them from Ryan Gosling (as the candidate's starry-eyed young press secretary), Philip Seymour Hoffman (as the campaign's chief strategist), and Paul Giamatti (as a cunning rival who's several chess moves ahead of everyone else).
Official Site:
Director: George Clooney
Producer: Grant Heslov, George Clooney, Brian Oliver, Nigel Sinclair, Guy East, Stephen Pevner, Leonardo DiCaprio, Jennifer Killoran, Todd Thompson, Nina Wolarsky and Barbara Hall
Cast: Ryan Gosling, George Clooney, Philip Hoffman, Paul Giamatti, Marisa Tomei, Jeffrey Wright, Evan Wood, Max Minghella, Jennifer Ehle, Michael Mantell, Gregory Itzin, Talia Akiva, Yuriy Sardarov, Bella Ivory and Maya Sayre

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