George Clooney directs this so-so political thriller about a presidential candidate and his rocky campaign. Clooney plays the maverick candidate, a governor who refuses to play games and seems quite ethical. Ryan Gosling plays one of his campaign managers—who learns a few things about his boss that make things, well, complicated. The movie benefits from strong performances by Clooney, Gosling and especially Philip Seymour Hoffman, as Gosling’s boss and mentor. It’s also a mighty improvement over Clooney’s last directorial effort, Leatherheads. Still, it’s not the amazingly profound political thriller it wants to be. It’s more of a film about people behaving badly and paying the price, with political shenanigans in the background. The film also stars Marisa Tomei, Evan Rachel Wood and Paul Giamatti.
Director: George Clooney
Producer: Grant Heslov, George Clooney, Brian Oliver, Nigel Sinclair, Guy East, Stephen Pevner, Leonardo DiCaprio, Jennifer Killoran, Todd Thompson, Nina Wolarsky and Barbara Hall
Cast: Ryan Gosling, George Clooney, Philip Hoffman, Paul Giamatti, Marisa Tomei, Jeffrey Wright, Evan Wood, Max Minghella, Jennifer Ehle, Michael Mantell, Gregory Itzin, Talia Akiva, Yuriy Sardarov, Bella Ivory and Maya Sayre