Thursday, July 02, 2009

Burn After Reading

Burn After Reading is another entry into the bizarre and twisted world of the Cohen Brother. Unlike No Country For Old Men, this film is more in line with the dark humor present in Fargo and Barton Fink. However, with that said, this film is not the hilarious, "funny" film that they advertised it as. Don't get me wrong, there are funny moments - but it just goes to show how well a film can be edited down to when they're coming up with a trailer.

The movie is dark. The situations are absurd, silly and much larger than life would allow them to be in reality.

The characters are really what sell the film. The interaction they have between each other is complex, intricate. The mundane existences they exist in is turned into something outrageous and over the top.

The film stars John Malkovich as CIA analyst Osbourne Cox, George Clooney as Harry Pfarrer, Frances McDormand as Linda Litzke, Brad Pitt as Chad Feldheimer, Tilda Swinton as Katie Cox, and Richard Jenkins as Ted Treffon.

The plot revolves around Osbourne Cox (Malkovich) who quits his job at the CIA in the first few moments of the movie, his wife Katie (Swinton) who is having an affair with Harry Pfarrer (Clooney), who is also dating people on the side. Linda Litzke (McDormand)is one of those people. Linda works with Chad Feldheimer (Pitt) who both are trying to blackmail Osbourne with "top secret" files that they found at the gym they both work at.

I thought the film was pretty enjoyable and had a wonderful time trying to figure out what would happen next. The cast did a wonderful job in their roles and appeared to have a wonderful time making the film. And as someone who lives in the DC area, they did a relatively good job with the geography of the area - far better than 24's dartboard attempt.

*** 1/2 out of *****

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