September 16, 2008

Surrounded By Idiots

Burn After Reading

The title of this post refers to the characters in the film, most of whom are idiots of various varieties. George Clooney's character makes about the worst security guard there ever was. Brad Pitt is obsessed with groovy tunes. Frances McDormand has a very poor idea of when the Cold War ended. And John Malkovich...cusses too much.

I did enjoy the movie sometimes. There are some good laughs, and I marvelled at Tilda Swinton's chance to once again play an icy bitch. But on the whole I felt the film was lacking something - the glue to hold it together. Too much quirky humor, not enough actual substance. I think it would have been better suited as an extended SNL sketch.

The title of this post does not refer to the audience in the theater when we saw the movie. Still, it was an odd experience - like being in a meeting of the Malkovich Fan Club. I swear every time he came on the screen they just laughed and laughed - even when he wasn't doing anything! Bizarre.

My grade - C+.

Special bonus for DC folks - all sorts of shots and references to local geography. But you have to wonder - what time of night would George Clooney have been driving around Wisconsin Avenue and M Street in Georgetown where there would be NO TRAFFIC?

3 comments:

ScottE. said...

I give the movie a solid B. I enjoyed it. The quirky, black humor of the Coen Brother's is a nice change of pace from regular "funny ha ha" movies. If you enjoyed Fargo, you'll probably like this one.

joyous said...

There would be no traffic at Wisconsin and M Streets in Georgetown at about 3:00 a.m. on a Tuesday. I am glad I no longer work in the previous place that I got to know this information.

Stef said...

I still want to see this -- even a weak Coen Bros comedy is still pretty entertaining. Heck, I even liked the bad George Clooney / Catherine Zeta Jones romance they did a few years ago. I don't know if I'll get to see this in theaters, but it'll definitely be on my list at some point.