Hail Caesar

Posted: February 11, 2016 by Micah in Movie Reviews
Tags: , , , ,

Ah, the fresh breezy feeling of a new year. A new batch of movies, a new set of hard working actors that I can compare to small forest animals. A fresh batch of challenges, hardships, and arbitrary snap judgments await us fair friends! Let’s take this magical journey together! Let’s tip toe through these cinematic tulips like twin tigers tripping through the tallied trampolines. Let’s review some movies!!

Micah Reviews: Hail Caesar

Francesco-Francavilla-HAIL-CAESAR_1200_1800_81_s

This isn’t the official poster for the movie… it’s just the sweetness.

 

It’s weird to have a movie in the January/February doldrums that actually looks good. Jefbruary is a time for the release of Dirty Grandpa and The Choice. The Cinematic equivalent of the hair that gets stuck in your drain, certainly not a pretty thing, but a necessary side effect of living life and making movies. Then all the sudden along comes a Coen brothers movie, right smack in the middle of Jefbruary. So, is this more hairy drain filth, or somewhere in that drain mess have we found the subtle silvery glow of a quarter that inexplicably got stuck in that hair?? The answer to that question, that got WAY more gross that I intended, right after this bold font.

The Plot:

It’s the 1930s… ish. And Hollywood is right in its golden age. The Magic is magical, the silver screen is silvercal, and the mustaches are… mustachical?? In the middle of all this mustachicalness is the head mustache, a man by the name of Eddie Mannix. He’s the guy who holds this whole crazy studio together, and he’ll have to deal with a lot on this particular day. Pregnant movie stars, prima donna directors, and southern accented celebrities are just some of the things he has to deal with, and that’s before his biggest star, Baird Whitlock, goes missing.

hail-caesar brolin

“Please don’t stare directly at the mustache.’

 

Can Eddie keep the studio together, all while making one of the biggest decisions of his life? He’ll have to, otherwise it’ll mean no mustache for him… I think.

The Positives:

A great cast all put in great performances here. The headlines are definitely Josh Brolin and George Clooney as Eddie Mannix and Bair Whitlock respectively, but the rest of the cast works together really well and play their slightly caricatured characters with all the commitment and whimsy necessary.

cast

Your cast… or at least 5 of them.

 

The visual style of the movie is really great, and really revels in its setting. If you’re a fan of this era of movies, or even just interested in the time period, you’ll get everything you loved right here. Gene Kelly style musical numbers, are interspersed with old school ‘Swords and Sandals’ epics, which are briefly interrupted by a full on water musical. All of these are brilliantly filmed and great callbacks to that ‘golden age’ style of movie.

The script here is solid. There’s nothing that stands out as overly great, or incredibly funny, but much like the movie itself, the script keeps things simple and quick and doesn’t mess around with too many unnecessary frills. It’s funny, but not in a big laugh out loud way. It keeps up a steady stream of funny lines and awkward situations that are quirkily entertaining enough to keep you engaged.

The Negatrons:

Because of the simplicity of the script there’s not really a huge driving plot point, or a lot of suspense. This does give the film time to do what it really wants to do (take a wide and relaxing look at it’s world) but those not committed to that world, or looking for suspense or action will find themselves probably a little turned off by the movies lack of a driving plot.

In Conclusion:

This may be the Coen brothers most Coen brothersy movie ever. That’s not a bad thing at all, but it may exclude some viewers looking for more standard fare. That said if you like the Coen brothers or this time period of movies you should definitely check this out. I thoroughly enjoyed the characters and the world that those characters populated. It was a simple movie, about a simpler time and I thoroughly enjoyed it.

I give it 4 mustachelinesses out of 5.

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