Don't follow Shakespeare's advice

Oct. 10, 2011, 6:49 p.m. | By Hannah Lynn | 11 years, 11 months ago

There is no reason to beware these "Ides of March"

Between George Clooney and Ryan Gosling, who is more charming? That alone sounds like it could be a movie plot. Instead, "The Ides of March" gives us a captivating political drama about integrity and loyalty (plus a little charm), and that's good too.

The story begins in the middle of the presidential primary campaign of Mike Morris (George Clooney), a governor from Pennsylvania. He works closely with campaign manager Paul Zara (Phillip Seymour Hoffman) and junior campaign manager Stephen Meyers (Ryan Gosling). Meyers meets with rival campaign manager Tom Duffy (Paul Giamatti) who asks him to come and work for the other side. Meyers chooses to keep this meeting secret from the rest of the campaign staff except Zara, which leads to a whole slew of lies revealed by journalist Ida Horowicz (Marisa Tomei).

Although the film has a bit of a slow start, Clooney, Gosling and Hoffman quickly draw the viewer in with their Oscar nomination worthy performances. Giamatti and Tomei offer excellent supporting performances as well.

Most political dramas have a standard plot that rarely shocks the viewer, since we've seen nearly every kind of political disaster occur in real life. "The Ides of March" is no exception, but it still makes for an attention-grabbing film thanks to its plot twists, solid acting and its grim reflection of the transformation of modern-day American politics. The film's depiction of a campaign's behind-the-scenes work serves as a way for Americans to see how politics has become more of a corrupt game than an election to serve the public.

In addition to being a solid lead actor, Clooney also did a good job at directing the film. There are very dramatic close-ups (really close - you can see their pores) and well a well chosen soundtrack that adds to the suspense. The movie's cold and snowy setting also helps underscore the frigid feelings associated with politics.

With its intrigue, acting and decent directing, "The Ides of March” is an engrossing film both for those who love politics and those who think it's a shady institution. The film's biggest flaw is that they chose to release it on Oct. 7 rather than Mar. 15.

'The Ides of March" (101 mins) is rated R for strong language. Now playing in theaters everywhere.

Tags: george clooney ryan gosling the ides of march

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