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Review: Clooney’s Suburbicon is a waste of A-list talent

Julianne Moore and Matt Damon in Suburbicon.

Photo Credit: Hilary Bronwyn Gay

1 out of 4 stars

Title
Suburbicon
Written by
Joel Coen, Ethan Coen, George Clooney and Grant Heslov
Directed by
George Clooney
Starring
Matt Damon, Julianne Moore and Oscar Isaac
Genre
Drama
Classification
14A
Country
USA
Language
English
Year
2017

Let George Clooney's attempt at Coen Brothers cosplay be a lesson to anyone who thinks that admiration effortlessly transfers over to achievement.

Although Clooney is a long-time collaborator with Joel and Ethan Coen (O Brother, Where Art Thou?; Hail, Caesar!; Burn After Reading; Intolerable Cruelty), his attempt here at dusting off one of their earliest screenplays is a misbegotten endeavour from start to finish.

Whatever stabs at dark comedy, social satire and noir-esque murder-mystery the Coens may have once been mulling with Suburbicon are only superficial wounds in Clooney's hands. There is no harm in allowing Clooney to further stretch his directorial muscles – Good Night, and Good Luck is not bad – but there ought to be a law against wasting such talents as Matt Damon, Julianne Moore and poor ol' Oscar Isaac in this hollow exercise.

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Josh Brolin was also once part of the experiment, but Clooney had the good decency to cut his scenes. What a guy.

Video: George Clooney compares Houston flood victims to Syrian refugees (The Canadian Press)
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About the Author

Barry Hertz is the deputy arts editor and film editor for The Globe and Mail. He previously served as the Executive Producer of Features for the National Post, and was a manager and writer at Maclean’s before that. His arts and culture writing has also been featured in several publications, including Reader’s Digest and NOW Magazine. More

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