The American | Chicago Reader

The American

George Clooney produced and stars in this international spy thriller, which he probably thought of as existential but which registers onscreen as a giant bore. He plays an American weapons expert hiding out in Sweden, where his unsuspecting squeeze winds up dead after they're located by enemy agents; the hero flees to Italy and holes up in a picturesque mountain village in Abruzzo, awaiting instructions from his impressively craggy superior (Johan Leysen) and aching for human connection. The fact that he can find it only with a gorgeous whore (Violante Placido) and a wise old Catholic priest (Paolo Bonacelli) is pretty funny, now that I think of it. Adapted from a novel by Martin Booth, the screenplay purposely obscures the hero's mission and sponsors and why someone's out to get him, the better to simulate a sense of spiritual crisis. Director Anton Corbijn is best known for Control, the biopic of Joy Division singer Ian Curtis. In English and subtitled Italian.



  • Anton Corbijn


  • George Clooney
  • Violante Placido
  • Thekla Reuten
  • Paolo Bonacelli
  • Bruce Altman


  • Enzo Sisti

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