peteg's blog - noise - movies - 2014 07 27 AMostWantedMan

A Most Wanted Man

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Back to the Showplace Icon Theatre, 4.45pm, $11.75. This time I went in the front door, off Roosevelt, and had a coffee at the place across the road from the cinema. This is Anton Corbijn's third feature; I really enjoyed Control, and The American was not too bad. Here he attempts to show some apparently decent, longer sighted spies at work who, in Kevin Rudd's immortal phrase, get rat fucked by the CIA and German neo Gestapo. Was that Tom Waits's Hoist That Rag over the credits? And more shockingly, a cover of Bowie's Everyone Says Hi (by Claudia Brücken) in the bar, where Rachel McAdams and Philip Seymour Hoffman do not, in fact, say hi? The main draw was to see the latter in his final lead role, and he indeed masterfully anchors the piece with lots of mouth breathing, as always. I have to wonder why they used American actors here; I can only imagine what the cast of The Lives of Others, or even Cristoph Waltz, might have achieved. (Having sad that the actual German part of the cast is solid, including Hamburg itself.) McAdams is as pretty as ever but her accent is everywhere and even the jittery camerawork does not conceal her lack of range. Willem Dafoe tries to help her out by being an ineffectual cardboard cutout of his usual badass self. The story suffers from some very broken bridges in the centre.

Dana Stevens. Manohla Dargis.