Saturday, October 13, 2007

Movie review: Michael Clayton (2007)

Wow, what a year 2007 has been. And it's only October. Last year, we were scraping bottom well into late November before good movies started cropping up, but 2007 has been gifted with all kinds of really good movies, from comedies (Knocked Up, Hot Fuzz, Superbad) to action (300, The Bourne Ultimatum, Transformers) to dramas (Eastern Promises, Zodiac, Rescue Dawn), and that's only to name a few. Now, we have Michael Clayton, George Clooney's latest drama-thriller.

Written and directed by The Bourne Ultimatum writer Tony Gilroy, Michael Clayton does for legal thrillers what the Bourne franchise did for spy flicks - take the genre to a whole new level. It's not that the legal thriller hasn't had its fair share of great successes - several John Grisham adaptations come to mind - but Gilroy's approach is certainly don't-bullshit-and-slowly-build-tension-until-it-bursts. There are some slow sections in Michael Clayton, and those expecting a fast-paced thriller might find themselves falling asleep in the first half, but those of you who have patience and know a good movie when you see it will certainly find something to campaign around. For much of the movie, you don't really know what the title character's job is, but then, when it reaches the amazing and surprisingly quick ending that it has, you realize he's been doing it all along. Michael Clayton is a movie with a few twists, or at least new directions, and a mounting sense that there will be only one winner.

Read the full Michael Clayton movie review.

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