Miss Sloane

miss-sloane-32016 Golden Globe nominee Jessica Chastain plays Elizabeth Sloane, a notorious Washington anti-regulation lobbyist taking on the biggest challenge of her career when she’s asked to help take on the powerful gun lobby.

It’s timely and potentially divisive subject matter that will surely be attacked in many online comment sections as Liberal Hollywood Elites trying to take your guns away. But, honestly, can’t we use a rational discussion on gun control right now?

Well, you won’t find any of that here. Neither Sloane nor her opponents are particularly interested in facts or rhetoric. They are masters of spin, manipulation, and trickery. Never mind guns or politics, this is really a movie about sleight of hand. It has more in common with movies about magicians, con artists, or thieves  than movies about politics.

Film Review Miss SloanAnd maybe this is supposed to be the point. The only problem is that and Miss Sloane (the movie) seems to love the thrill of the chase as much as it claims to be outraged by her methods. For awhile, this behind-the-scenes look at what it takes to pass a bill in Washington (or keep one from passing) is almost fascinating and thought-provoking but the endless double crosses and Sloane’s nearly superhuman foresight make it harder and harder to take any of this seriously.

Needless to say, Chastain is pretty much the best thing about the movie. Any insight miss-sloane-2we get into her character comes more from her performance than Jonathan Perera’s script. But even she occasionally fails to convince during some scenes where she seems to be acting more for the trailer than the actual film. I can only assume director John Madden is to blame for this given that Miss Sloane also showcases inexplicable overacting from the likes of Michael Stuhlbarg, Sam Waterston, and Mark Strong that I can’t believe made the final cut. You’d think  a director of a Best Picture winner (Shakespeare in Love but still) would have done a better job of reining them in.

Madden may have had trouble keeping control of his hammy cast but he still manages to make a watchable film. It is slickly edited and never boring. And I have to admit, its most outrageous twists are the best ones. It just feels like a bit of a missed opportunity.

Maybe I shouldn’t complain. I knew almost nothing about this movie going in and expected something serious and dry. I was anticipating a chore and got a preposterous guilty pleasure that I’m still trying to forgive myself for kind of liking.

 

 

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19 thoughts on “Miss Sloane

  1. tubularsock

    Matt …… great review. ” It has more in common with movies about magicians, con artists, or thieves than movies about politics.” Well, that pretty well sums up politics and like you said maybe that was the point. In the “real” world we could get rid of the bullets and then people would still club each other to death. Tubularsock feels that once again the Beatles summed it up best ……. “All we need is love . . .”. Thanks.

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    1. Matt Post author

      I think you may be right. I’m in support of increased gun control but sometimes all the vitriol in the gun debate on both sides fails to ask the tougher question of why so many people want to kill each other in the first place.

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  2. Harlon

    Missed opportunity is a great way to put it. The best parts of the movie, for me anyway, are Jessica Chastain and the fact that the movie was filmed in my home city – so there was entertainment value in watching them make Toronto look like Washington, DC. Other than that, that was about it. Could have been better, could have been worse. Harlon

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    1. Matt Post author

      Hey Harlon, I didn’t realize that it was filmed in Toronto and I wish that I had because I’d also have a good time seeing if I know Toronto well enough to spot it.

      Liked by 1 person

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  3. garym6059

    I only want to see this movie because my daughter’s name is Sloane :). Granted it is her first name and she was named after my unhealthy crush on Sloane from the show Entourage.

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  4. Pingback: Golden Globe Nominations | ASSHOLES WATCHING MOVIES

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