The Ides of March [Blu-Ray] George Clooney

The Ides of March [Blu-Ray] George Clooney
The trailers for both of Ryan Gosling's fall movies didn't do their accompanying films justice. Drive was presented as a mob-themed car film, while The Ides of March looked like a liberal-baiting political corruption thriller. Neither lived up to the hype. This most likely helped the former's box office performance yet hindered the latter's. Our current age of disillusionment tends to render any attempts at painting America the Good (even the leftist side) with cynical scepticism. Yet the film, which chronicles a political consultant's wavering loyalties during a fictional democratic primary, paints politics as nothing more than a game filled with players who put themselves ahead of friends, colleagues and country. The problem is when crafting this screed against the current political system, writer/director/actor Clooney and fellow screenwriters Grant Heslov and Beau Willimon, who wrote the play on which the film is based, failed to create characters audiences can sympathize with. From Clooney (playing democratic Governor Mike Morris) to Philip Seymour Hoffman (as Morris's campaign manager) to Marisa Tomei (as a political reporter), no one is interested in anything besides winning. Power corrupts, as it were, and the little people ― in this case, Evan Rachel Wood, as a campaign intern ― get crushed along the way. The Blu-Ray includes a director's commentary from Clooney and a number of short features, including a self-serving one about the cast and one titled "Believe: George Clooney," where the cast sings the director's praises. Boasting a terrific cast, The Ides of March isn't a bad film, but by offering nothing to cheer for, it's difficult to connect with. Time might be kind to it, but at the moment it's difficult not to read too much into the film and see it as Clooney's response to calls that he run for public office. (Alliance)