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BoxOffice review: MI-4
BoxOffice review: The Ides of March
Joseph Mosselson | Fri, 15 Jun 2012
Ides of March
offers a chilly, bleak view of the moral compromises it takes to make it in politics in America.
Ryan Gosling stars as an ambitious, if rather naïve political wiz-kid working the presidential campaign trail for Governor Mike Morris (George Clooney, who also directs).
Morris’s campaign is being run by veteran politico Paul Zara (Philip Seymour Hoffman), while a rival campaign manager (Paul Giamatti) lurks on the margins just waiting for the opportunity to get his man in front.
With such a heavy-weight cast, viewers would be entitled to expect some fireworks. But, aside from a couple of fantastic monologues from Hoffman’s character, The Ides of March is less interested in delivering big dramatic moments as it is in probing the little ways in which ideals get eroded in order to get ahead.
Which is not to say that the film under-delivers in terms of plot: campaign-trail romance, political rivalry, betrayal, intrigue and death all feature prominently. Events unfold in a fairly understated manner, however, seemingly less important than the personalities in the foreground who drive the story forward.
The Ides of March
may seem to deliver a fairly well-worn political message (at least to anyone who followed American politics during the Bush administration), it’s foregrounding of the politics of personality may just be its most trenchant statement, albeit one that’s made fairly subtly. It’s not an overtly angry movie, but it’s lingering weariness with the system is something that will stay with viewers long after it ends.
The Ides of March
available on DStv BoxOffice
from Fri 13 Jun to Mon 16 July.
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