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Review: Lions For Lambs

Nov. 9, 2007by: Tim Goernert

Three stories, all happening at the same time. An ambitious Senator meets with a veteran reporter to do a one on one exclusive story about a military operation that will win the war on terror. Story two is about that particular military operation in Afghanistan. Finally, our third story revolves around a political science professor trying to inspire one of his hopeful students to recognize his full potential and be more. So, what are we in store for here? One big political conversation from different points of views ensues.

Judging from the trailers this movie looked like a real political bore fest. The last political movie that I enjoyed was JFK and who knows how accurate that was. That said, LIONS FOR LAMBS was actually quite interesting considering most of it was just clever banter back and forth. Thankfully, the military aspect of the story kinda glues it all together with its light action. At first youre thinking this is clearly a propaganda piece but as you continue to watch it, you discover that it really isnt. It was interesting on how you see the government views one thing in a positive light and the media sees the exact same thing but in a negative one. Its all interpretation; I loved this example where the media was saying, The Government is panicking to find a solution. Then the government would put there little spin and say, Actually, the Government is determined to find a solution. If this isnt a propaganda film then maybe its an awareness film that illustrates that we all have a responsibility to help make a difference. Sitting on the sides lines isnt going to cut it anymore. All three stories explore how the characters are trying to do their part in their own way.

Tom Cruise plays Senator Jasper Irving. I think Cruise is a fine actor and I think theres something to be said about his supporting roles he takes on. I find his supporting roles a 100 times more powerful than his leading ones. Cruise as a Senator was bang on! He brought this charm and confidence that was stereotypical of any Senator, all the way down to his perma-positive smile. It was very shocking and believable! Good job Tommy!

Meryl Streep plays Janine Roth, the hardcore veteran reporter who gives Senator Irving a run for his money. Its Streep! She cant be bad. Shes good at whatever she does. Her back and forth banter with Cruise was a real treat to watch! As for Robert Redford, I usually like most of his films. He was good here as a Political Science professor. I just find lately, hes not really acting in his films or most of his recent films, it seems like hes just playing himself all the time. Its not a completely bad thing; I would just like to see him do something different next time.

Despite his non acting, the man can direct. He was able to basically take a whole picture that focused on a bunch of political discussions and made it interesting to watch. I liked that he was able to make us viewers be aware of the straining current events and make us ask a question: What would I do?

I did enjoy it. I normally find most political flicks to be boring. But Redford brought a different approach here, where regular folks will understand and appreciate whats being discussed. I dont think this is one of those movies you gotta go rush out and see. I think this is one of those Comfort of your own home scenarios.

300 (10/10)
Blades of Glory (8/10)
Black Snake Moan (8/10)
Catch and Release (5/10)
Deja Vu (6/10)
Eragon (4/10)
Factory Girl (7/10)
Grindhouse (9/10)
Premonition (3/10)
Reign Over Me (8/10)
Shooter (6/10)
The Astronaut Farmer (8/10)
Norbit (6/10)
The Departed (9/10)
The Lookout (7/10)
TMNT (8/10)
Wild Hogs (5/10)
Zodiac (7/10)

-- by Tim Goernert



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