I’d been hearing a lot about this one – from the raves at both the Venice and Toronto Film Festivals to all the Oscar chatter – and today I finally got to see it for myself at a screening of our Cinema Society group.
LOVED it. The best movie of the year for me so far. I liked “Moneyball” and Brad Pitt was great in it, but “The Ides of March” is first rate – suspenseful, smart, full of nuanced performances and a combo of a morality play and a political thriller.
Directed by George Clooney, whose body of work as a director gets more impressive with every release, the movie stars Ryan Gosling as an idealistic politico who’s working on the presidential campaign of a governor (played by Clooney). The always brilliant Philip Seymour Hoffman is Gosling’s boss, the veteran campaign manager, Marisa Tomei does a terrific turn as a dogged Washington reporter, Paul Giamatti runs the campaign of Clooney’s opponent and versatile Evan Rachel Wood plays a sexy young campaign intern.
Here’s the trailer.
I predict a Best Actor nomination for Gosling, Best Supporting noms for Hoffman and Clooney and a Best Director nom for Clooney for sure.
Now comes the really good part. Our screening was supposed to conclude with a Q&A with Paul Giamatti. Instead, after the credits rolled and the lights came on, we were told that Giamatti couldn’t make it….but that Clooney was coming instead! I was pysched.
Minutes later, George himself bounded down the aisle of the theater and sat on stage. God, he’s a gorgeous man – even more handsome in person.
And is he ever funny. He had the audience howling when he made jokes about his early days in television – very self-deprecating. He related interesting stories about his father running for office in Kentucky and about his actor friends who appear in the film and about how he was sure that Democrats will love the first half of the movie and Republicans will love the second half. Michael said to me as we were leaving, “Now there’s a guy whose life I wouldn’t mind having.”
The movie opens October 7th. It doesn’t have car chases or superheroes or wizards; it’s a film for grownups. I hope everybody goes to see it.