Tuesday 18th January 2022

Michael Clayton (15)
Directed by: Tony Gilroy
Reviewed by: Paul Fonz

This film, despite having one of the dullest titles ever, is actually rather good. George Clooney stars as the title character and the recent trend of casting British actors as Americans continues with Tilda Swinton and Tom Wilkinson co-starring.

You're fired! Hang on, you're not Alan Sugar
You're fired! Hang on, you're not Alan Sugar

Clooney's character works for a large law firm, and is their "fix it" man. Whenever something needs controlling, he gets it done, by whatever means necessary. Wilkinson is another highly paid and overworked genius at the firm. His task is to defend the multinational corporation U/North from a $3 billion class action law suit, which claims that one of their leading products is causing cancer on small farms.

Things get interesting when Wilkinson's character goes a bit loopy and not only runs around a car park in only his socks, but also begins preparing a case against U/North. Clooney needs to step in and control the situation; however, he has plenty to deal with in his own life, including a gambling problem and paying off his drunken brother's substantial debts.

The film throughout is quite slow paced, but throbs with a wonderfully tense atmosphere that is only enhanced by the cinematography. The washed out colours give everything a depressing, grey look that really communicates the mood of Clayton and his hopeless struggle, while his plight is slowly unveiled. It is only near the end of the film that you fully come to appreciate why he is so jaded.

It certainly raises some interesting questions too, like what does really go on in the world of corporate espionage? What sort of man keeps a law firm on retainer? What does that even mean? And how can they possibly tie up all the threads in this film? Well, it doesn't present answers to all these, but if you're after something a bit more tense and adult after the summer blockbusters, then this is worth checking out.

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Length: 119 minutes
Certificate: 15
Official Site:
IMDB Link:
Release Date: 28th September 2007

Top Five Rating: 70.0%70.0%70.0%70.0%70.0%70.0%70.0%70.0%70.0%70.0% (70.0%)
User Rating: 80.0%80.0%80.0%80.0%80.0%80.0%80.0%80.0%80.0%80.0% (80.0%)

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