The Ides of March
2011
***½
Director: George Clooney
Cast: Ryan Gosling, George Clooney, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Paul Giamatti, Evan Rachel Wood, Marisa Tomei, Jeffrey Wright, Max Minghella, Jennifer Ehle

Ryan Gosling gives another strong performance as Stephen Meyers, a junior campaign manager who hopes to secure Governor Morris’ nomination as the Democratic Party’s presidential candidate. During the crucial Ohio primary, this idealistic but naive young man learns that he cannot trust anyone in the political game. George Clooney’s fourth film behind the camera is a political drama which follows in the footsteps of The Candidate and Primary Colors, with a little less humour and a little more cynicism. The screenplay is adapted from Beau Willimon’s play Farragut North, and it takes its sweet time to get going. The plot machinery is clearly at work in the first thirty minutes, but it’s unclear where we’re headed. The story eventually comes into focus, and the second half twists turn this into a very gripping thriller.