Review: The Informant!

And yes, it is with the exclamation mark!  Steve Soderbergh, director of the hit and miss (Oceans 11 through 13; Full Frontal; Sex, Lies and Videotape; and Bubble), teams up with Matt Damon for a “true story” type movie…but it’s a comedy.  About corporate greed.  Giggling yet?  When Soderbergh is hitting (Out of Sight), he’s pretty damn good and Damon has been really consistent for a while now sooooo off to the movies I go.

Mark Whitacre (Damon) has the money, the house, the adoring family and the pot-belly that comes with it.  He’s a fairly successful guy that decides one day that the mega-million dollar corporation he works for are bad guys and he’s the white hat.  Lone crusader vs. greedy, price-fixing money machine.  Well yes and no.  This is one of those movies where they only give a piece at a time to complete the whole picture.  You just get the edge pieces to frame the story while Whitacre gradually fills in the rest…and not willingly.

Matt Damon is awesome in this.  And yes, that is Matt Damon…bad toupee, love handles, porn mustache and golly gee wiz attitude.  He’s hilarious as the guy who just doesn’t seem to understand the circumstances he’s put himself in.  What makes the movie is his voiceover.  No matter what’s going on, whether he’s lying to the head of security, spilling his guts to the FBI or walking into the office after things have “hit the fan,” he’s got the greatest case of A.D.D. I’ve ever witnessed.  It’s brilliant.

*I’m saying Oscar. Sshhhh, if it happens I’ll look like a genius.  If it doesn’t, you probably won’t remember you read it here.

The rest of the cast are pretty good.  Scott Bakula (I’ve had a soft spot for the guy since Quantum Leap) and Joel McHale (from Talk Soup and new show Community) are great as the friends/FBI agents who want to help but can’t seem to believe it themselves how bad it gets.  Tony Hale is great in everything and he’s no exception here.  Great movie.  Just when you think it might be getting a bit too much with the reveals, it wraps up.  It’s like that girlfriend/boyfriend you break up with juuuust before any big fight.  Only good memories.  Any longer and I can’t say I’d like you.

3 stars
– good movie, take a friend. Great cast. Great story. You won’t feel too invested in the characters but it’s an accident you just can’t turn your eyes away from.

Coming Attractions:
Where the Wild Things Are -If you’re anywhere near my age, this book was a staple of your childhood.  There’s talk of Spike Jonze going waaaay over budget and spending way too much money but I DON’T CARE.  The last movie I heard that about was Apocalypse Now and that turned out all right.  So yes, Where the Wild Things Are is Apocalypse Now for children.  Want to see it even more don’t you?

Randomly Recommended
Rounders – For a Matt Damon movie, I wanted to go with Good Will Hunting but who the hell hasn’t seen that?  No, I went with a movie that may not be as popular but has a special place in my heart.  Texas Hold’em, Ed Norton, John Malkovich as an Oreo-loving Russian with a bad accent, and Gretchen Mol.  Enjoy.  Die happy.

Outfoxed: Rupert Murdoch’s War on Journalism – A documentary any journalism class should see.  It was either this, The Corporation, or Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room for a portrait of real life corporate corruption.  Any are good viewing but Outfoxed was my favourite of the bunch.

I’m always on the look out for good documentaries…any ideas?

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  1. Sheldon Johnson says:

    Excellent. I had high hopes for this little number. I know I’ll be renting this (I never go to the theatre for comedy), but thanks to this review, plus my other mainstay Peter Travers, I’ll have less anxiety about walking to the till.

  2. Great movie, the only thing I didn’t like were the opening titles, too ugly and 1970’s for a movie set in the early 1990’s.

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