Saw the movie Michael Clayton over the weekend. I’ve recently decided that George Clooney is one of my favorite actors, both due to his performances and the movies he chooses to be in. No that I’ve seen EVERYTHING he’s been in, but I don’t remember ever seeing one of his films and thinking it sucked afterward (well there was that episode of The Golden Girls).
Aside from Clooney, I appreciated the performances of everyone in the movie. The Arthur Edens character was played superbly by Tom Wilkinson. Edens is sort of a latter-day Howard Beal (they even kind of look alike) who crosses the line into madness, or unspeakable reality, depending on how you look at it. Characters like this always fascinate me because they’ve reached a point of clarity and honesty that makes the rest of us uncomfortable.
Even the bad guy (or woman in this case) played by Tilda Swinton was conflicted and human. I’m not sure I’d ever seen underarm wetness dominate a scene in anything other than comedies until now.
It’s not a fast-paced movie, but the writing and performances in Michael Clayton keep it going at a good clip. It’s over before you know it.
And speaking of being over, I think it’s a testament to Clooney’s acting abilities that he can pull off a two minute silent cab ride at the end of the movie. It’s a neat little device, because you wind up reflecting on what all has happened right along with Clooney. That’s something that I usually do walking out of the theater but doing it a s part of the movie experience was interesting.