Ides of March is a full of Hollywood’s finest actors and it shows!

First let’s acknowledge the brilliant poster–one of the best of the year–It caught my attention right away and luckily the film delivered on its promise of awesomeness.   Actor/Director George Clooney is cool–he exudes charm and confidence–and obviously he attracts coolness towards him because he has gathered some of the most talented actors to work in The Ides of March and it pays off. 

How could it not?  Hard hitters, Phillip Seymour Hoffman and Paul Giamatti–each as the Senior Campaign Managers of opposing candidates, are amazing.  Young and promising Ryan Gosling and Evan Rachel Wood–both as enthusiastic, novice campaign members of Clooney’s “too perfect” Presidential candidate–are pitch perfect.  Even small parts to Jeffrey Wright and Marisa Tomei are played strongly .  Yeah, wow!

Then add a strong story from a former political communications director, Beau Wilmon–who also wrote the play the film is based on–Farragut North.  And you got yourself an interesting, compelling political thriller.  A thriller built on carefully chosen words and things left unsaid. 

I will say that Clooney is settling down nicely in the director’s chair.  He takes his time and uses close-ups to show more than words can say, yet it’s the stellar cast,  that makes this look way too easy. 

I walked out, as I do with most political tales, frustrated and a bit sad–not a the movie–but at the state of politics today.  I am a cynic and these stories only help to intensify my convictions. Ah, well.  Whatcha gonna do?  Nothing we can do–except go out –vote and have our voices heard.

Crazy, Stupid, Love. Is wonderfully more than I expected!

I went in ready for some fluffy romantic comedy fun–(starring some of my favorite people)–and by the end, I was in LOVE with Crazy, Stupid, Love.  Refreshingly, it does not follow a formula, instead it chooses to follow a man’s journey to try to understand this thing we call love.  The cast is pitch perfect and the writing is funny and full of heart.  But what sells this is the chemistry between its talented stars.

Steve Carell continues to impress.  He has this amazing ability to become the average man, yet remains wickedly sharp.  Ryan Gosling is fantastic!  (One of my favorites.)  Gosling has turned in some incredible performances and here he uses his skill to add little details that add depth to his womanizing alpha male.  Add the always wonderful Julianne Moore, the charming Emma Stone, who I have a crush on and the young, scene stealing Jonah Bobo –and you have an unforgettable ensemble.

I felt connected to these characters.  I felt their pain and loneliness.  I shared in their love.  I laughed with them and felt their embarrassment.  That’s a huge accomplishment for a 2 hour movie to make.  I will praise the directors, Glenn Ficarra and  John Requa and the screenwriter, Dan Fogelman for that.  Bravo!

I will boldly say you will fall in love with this film, too.  Really?  Yes, I believe in it that much.  Let’s call it faith…faith in love.