Man oh man... NEVER have I seen a film that had such great characters in it yet have absolutely NOTHING for them to do.
George Clooney is good. So is Tilda Swinton, Sydney Pollack, Tom Wilkinson, Michael O'Keefe... these are all god actors and the roles they are given all seem interesting; but the story just felt flat and there wasn't anything for them to do.
There's an old TWILIGHT ZONE episode called 5 CHARACTERS IN SEARCH OF AN EXIT. This film should have been called CHARACTERS IN SEARCH OF A SCREENWRITER.
It felt like a LA LAW episode from the last season when they didn't do much courtroom scenes and they just ran around Los Angeles. That, or someone gave Clooney this script as a pilot for a new TV series and he liked it, but didn't want to go back to television so he had it expanded for a 2 hour movie.
Yeah, it was interesting for the characters, but fell flat story wise. Just wait for the DVD and rent it if you like any of the actors in it.
I disagree. I thought this was one of the best films of the year so far. It's a taught and compelling thriller. The plot is sound. Everything makes complete sense in the end, but the film does not signal the usual so-called "hidden" clues or ambiguities. Nor does it turn on an unforeseen twist (hate those). Everything depends on the decisions of the title character. The ambiguous nature of Clayton's position as a white-shoe firm "fix-it" man determines the thrills. The question: Is a "fix-it" man by nature ethically challenged?
Most thrillers lazily provide the viewer plot "points," forks in the road where you think -- this film can go in one of two directions and I kinda see the possible endings.
I was riveted 45 minutes in when I realized I had little idea where it was going, and so could sit back and enjoy the ride, boredom free.
Swinton's character has to be one of the most intriguing in thriller history. I'd say more, but don't want to spoil.
Yes, there is the evil mega-corporation, but I didn't feel the film was preachy about it. Mostly cynical.
The ending was weirdly profound. Again, I'd elaborate but don't want to ruin it for others.