Just a quick reminder that My Thoughts On… posts may contain spoilers, so if you haven’t seen the film in question, it may be best to move on!
CIA operative Valerie Plame discovers her identity is allegedly leaked by the government as payback for an op-ed article her husband wrote criticizing the Bush administration. (via IMDb)
What I Liked
- This is a film set in Washington DC, and at that alone, I’m on board. Regular readers will know that I am obsessed with American politics, and whilst this is about the CIA rather than the federal government, I still loved the Washington angle.
- The fact that this is a true story makes it all the more enjoyable, and horrifying. I knew that Scooter Libby had been jailed, and I had a vague knowledge of the story, but I didn’t know an awful lot about it. This film filled in the gaps, and I did some reading about it afterwards. I like filling in gaps in my knowledge.
- This is the third film that Naomi Watts and Sean Penn have starred in together, after 21 Grams and The Assassination of Richard Nixon (a film I keep meaning to watch). By now they have great chemistry together, and it really shows.
- Taking of Sean Penn, I have to say that I adore him. I thought I was over it, because he looked kind of strange in the trailers and the press for Gangster Squad. But he looks great here, and I do like him a lot as an actor too (I’m not totally shallow).
- I also like Naomi Watts. I thought I didn’t like her, but I was basing that mainly on her performance in King Kong, where I find her super annoying. But since The Impossible, I’ve realised that she’s kind of awesome, and I’ve stopped thinking of her as the poor man’s Nicole Kidman. She’s very good as Valerie Plame.
- All in all, it’s a very enjoyable film. The performances from Watts and Penn are great, though I suppose you would never expect them to be anything but. I do wonder if it would be as enjoyable if I wasn’t morally outraged by the actions of the likes of Libby. If you were a diehard conservative with nothing but respect for Bush 43’s government, would you watch the film in the same way? Possibly not, but that doesn’t matter, because all the time I was watching it, I was just filled with sympathy at the way that Valerie Plame was treated. The way that the credits show the Senate hearings of the real life Plame was very effective too.
What I Didn’t Like
- Yet again, there was nothing that I didn’t like. I enjoyed the whole film, and I can see myself watching it again in the future. (For people who read these posts and get irritated by the way that I seldom have anything negative to say about films, wait for my post on Anchorman. I didn’t enjoy that film at all!)