Thursday, June 16, 2005

The Deal

A screener of a Christian Slater produced/starred modest budget political thriller came my way. I believe it opens tomorrow in limited distribution.

I'm a horrible reviewer, but I'll do my best. It's a sort of liberal porn version of the political thriller genre from a time before it was unpatriotic to point out that big corporations and the US gov't occasionially engage in bad acts. It's set in a very-near future (like, tomorrow) where we're at war with a united coalition of Arab states and gas prices have skyrocketed accordingly.

Strengths: It's dense enough to not be overly simple. Characters and their motives are not always spelled out in neon.

Weaknesses: A bit slow. The female lead, played by Selma Blair, is horrible in the first half though she manages to improve in the second half (not sure why). Plot twists are not quite as twisty as they hope to be. Modest budget likely prevents decent visual portrayal of life-in-high-oil price-recession, and aside from "highly educated yuppies have a hard time getting jobs" the impact isn't really portrayed.

Overall, if you're in the mood for a decent political thriller with a liberal porn bent, or if you just miss Christian Slater, this is a movie for you.

More info here.