Leatherheads

Rated NR

George Clooney’s third directorial effort is a well-meaning dud. This fictional look at the rise of professional football in the early 20th century—and an attempted homage to screwball comedies—doesn’t gel and feels rather haphazard. Clooney plays a football-team owner looking to recruit the nation’s greatest college player (John Krasinski) to raise his team’s profile and game attendance. Unfortunately, the script is dull, and when performers like Clooney and Renée Zellweger try to engage in zippy exchanges, they fall flat. Clooney wants his movie to be too many things at once, and he doesn’t succeed. Zellweger is a total bore, and the film is an expensive, unimpressive effort to impress.

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