Friday, February 5, 2016

Movie Review: "Hail, Caesar!"

I am not really sure where to begin here.  Hail, Caesar! was a movie I wanted to love, but just couldn't.  The thought of not liking a Coen brothers comedy still horrifies me, but that's exactly the case here.

Hail, Caesar! stars Josh Brolin as a Hollywood fixer for a fictional movie studio in the Fifties, and it is his job to privately resolve issues between stars, directors, and the media.  This idea seems to be perfect fodder for the Coens to mine, but the movie just never really seems to click into place.

George Clooney portrays a buffoonish movie star who is kidnapped by Communist screenwriters.  Why?  The movie never really makes that clear.  Then there are all of the well produced, but overly long stretches showing the various movies in production at the studio, from a biblical epic to a Gene Kelly-type song-and-dance movie.  I wanted to enjoy everything this movie was doing, but I never got why we were spending so much time with characters who literally only show up for one scene and then are done.

The only real saving grace for this movie is the very funny performance from Alden Ehrenreich as a singing cowboy movie star who helps Brolin rescue Clooney.  I personally would have watched a whole movie about Ehrenreich's character and had been more satisfied.

At the end of the day, I still think there was a great movie idea in here somewhere, but Hail, Caesar! never quite finds it, nurtures it, and brings it to the forefront.

I give Hail, Caesar! a 5 out of 10!

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