The Ides of March
"The Ides of March" trades on the surprising premise that powerful men in politics are notorious for fucking anything that moves. Interns, sheep dogs, the waitress at Denny's, distant cousins, you name it - there's a senator or a governor somewhere who's been inside of it.
The most surprising aspect of "The Ides of March" is the idea that anyone is actually interested in watching a long, slow and ponderous film about this very subject. After all, if I wanted to see video of a politician finger-banging his high school gym teacher on the subway, I'd just turn on Fox News. Let's face it - it's really hard to compete with the 24-hour news cycle when it comes to political scandals, one of the few areas where truth is often just as dull, repetitive and tired as fiction.
"The Ides of March" tries to get around this by pulling that time-honored trick of a fast-cut trailer that somehow manages to confuse the viewer into thinking that the plot is much more complex and intriguing than it actually is. Honestly, I have yet to meet a single person who had a clear idea of what this film was going to be about prior to viewing, and after having seen the languid mess that unfolded before me on the screen I feel foolish to have been suckered in by the promise of a political story that somehow wasn't all about sex, in the end.
"The Ides of March" is sort of like the "Star Wars: Attack of the Clones" of the boring dudes in suits genre. You get a trailer that makes you think it's all going to be light saber battles and spaceships but in the end it's a bunch of guys sitting in a room talking about the most tedious aspects of government policy. You could have replaced Ryan "Baby Goose" Gosling with a CGI Yoda and had exactly the same film. In fact, it might have even spiced up the sex scenes between his character and Evan Rachel Wood. After all, she dated Marilyn Manson, so she's gotta be into all of that weird shit, right?
To be honest, I have the feeling that these types of political dramas are kept around by Hollywood bosses who owe favors to overweight character actors looking for a believable role. This is probably the only explanation for how Paul Giamatti and Philip Seymour Hoffman continue to get work. It's either cast them as political advisors or Major League Baseball managers, I guess. Can't wait for Zach Galifianakis to show up in a Reagan bio pic.
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