Leonardo DiCaprio and Russell Crowe are Excellent in Ridley Scott’s Body of Lies

As far as I know this hasn’t been a critically acclaimed film. In fact, it’s one among many Hollywood attempts to expose the problematic approach of the United States to the War on Terror. Well, we all know it’s flawed but throwing it in our faces when we’ve paid $10 to be entertained is not the greatest approach.

As it happens, this movie was pretty entertaining. It was, I contend, too long, and quite frankly I don’t understand why almost every movie these days is over 2 hours. I wish I could say I thought they were trying to give us our money’s worth, but when it comes to movies, value is not measured in time. It’s measured in the quality of the product on the screen. Now, it’s not that there were a huge amount of scenes that needed cutting, but generally I find long movies to be a problem with ego or intelligence. Either the director/editor thinks that his material is too good to be cut or (s)he’s not smart enough to figure out how to cut material while making sure the story doesn’t fall apart. It’s an art and it’s difficult, I understand, but that doesn’t mean I need to sit there through 30 minutes of bunk material because you can’t get your cut on.

In any case, this movie was good, if a little long. I’m not generally a big Russell Crowe fan, but he did a good job being a character I wasn’t supposed to like much anyway. Leonardo DiCaprio, as always, was spectacular. I often say that he is one of the premier actors of our generation and I stand by that. He is incredible and this performance was great – not Oscar great and perhaps not Blood Diamond great, but he’s great.

I loved the portrayal of certain aspects of Muslim culture in Jordan, including the difficulties between the Muslim woman and DiCaprio’s character, and I loved the defense of the Middle East and Islamic culture by DiCaprio. The Middle East is a great place with great people and this global struggle that we’ve all become embroiled in makes it rather difficult to realize that. Obviously, that’s what Hollywood, in all its glory, wants us to see, but unfortunately it would rather slam it in our faces than subtly demonstrate the fact. What can you do?

I give Body of Lies 7 chocolate salty balls.

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Sean William Scott and Paul Rudd are Awesome in the Consistently Hilarious Role Models

Maybe I’m just really imature and like boob jokes and cursing (well, not maybe – for sure), but I thought that Role Models was awesome. I laughed from the first scene to the last. The jokes were gratuitous, unnecessary, vulgar and sure to offend. In short, they were my favorite kinds of jokes.

Both kids were excellent. The adults were too. Jane Lynch, who played Gale Sweeney and whom you may remember as the electronic store manager from The 40 Year Old Virgin was over the top but really entertaining. No one in this movie was cast poorly from the parents to the extras.

One could argue that this movie had little of value to offer, but I disagree. For the two main characters, it was a tale of growing up and coming to appreciate that there’s more to life than just themselves. For two kids, it was a story of getting noticed, appreciated and loved. People grew up, people learned, and people loved. What I’m trying to say is that many of the characters were dynamic and the story went some were.

What’s more awesome is that the story went there fast. This movie was an hour and a half. You may have caught from my rant in my review of Body of Lies that long movies piss me off. This movie didn’t have any extra material. It went from start to finish with laughs and humor and good times, and unlike this rambling review, it didn’t muck about and make me wonder why I was sitting there, watching a scene for ten minutes before a half-hearted punch-line laugh brought it to a close.

Basically, if you love sick and vulgar, funny and entertaining, then this movie is for you. I give it 8 Chocolate Salty Balls.

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