Movie thoughts: Michael Clayton

I ordered this on a whim after seeing the clips during the Oscars and wanting to know what the heck was going on in them.  I had no idea what the plot was except that George Clooney played a lawyer and things get tense.

This is a complicated movie.  We started watching it last night and the people upstairs were making all kinds of noise and we kept missing teensy bits of dialogue but it was enough to cause mass confusion for the first 40 minutes. 

I thought the pacing was really great.  Usually I’m not big on lawyer movies but there is so much plot lying around in this movie that its hard to not be interested.  Yeah, there were a few plot points from his personal life that felt extraneous, but when you think about it, the movie is called “Michael Clayton” and not “The U North Case” or something, telling the audience “Yep, its really all about this guy”.

Tom Wilkinson stole the show, but I wasn’t surprised by that.  He’s one of those British actors that is just always awesome.  Doesn’t matter how the rest of the film is, any scene he is in is top quality.  Tilda Swinton was very good too, especially with the very weird character she had to play (I think the Borg queen would have told her to loosen up!).

I’m not sure I liked the beginning of the movie.  Though it was a nice set up and it sucked me in, we’ve been getting so many movies that start with the end and then flash back.  I could see if they shot it a bit differently, like they tried to trick the audience into thinking he was dead or that someone else had been killed. 

Definite rental.  Quality flick.  If you’re in the mood for a thriller with lawyers yet not full of typical courtroom drama, give it a try.

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