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A Film Diary

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Watched: 16 October

A good performance by Jessica Chastain anchors this Washington, DC-set gun lobby drama, which is surprisingly entertaining before succumbing to not-very-credible plot twists, noble but cliched and dreary speeches and a rather disappointing insistence on its characters doing the right thing where previously far more interesting murky moral ground was successfully being negotiated. I’m not sure the British director John Madden has a particularly strong feel for the faces and places of K Street, and the film is hampered a little by its unwillingness to venture away from familiar-looking boardrooms, banqueting/conference centres and senate hearing rooms — there are times when you feel the slight pinch of a budget. The few good lines unfortunately have to fight with some real clangers, too, and though there’s an attempt to replicate The West Wing’s walking-and-talking, the dialogue is sadly not on a par with Sorkin’s. Worth a watch for Chastain, but sadly the other members of the impressive-looking cast are wasted, save for Michael Stuhlbarg. (***)

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  1. December 6, 2017

    Hey buddy. Been wanting to catch this for a while now. Chastain is a fascinating actor and deserves more leading roles like this.

    • Stu #
      December 8, 2017

      Hello Mark – hope all’s good! It’s worth a look, purely for Chastain’s performance. It’s a shame the film takes one or two wrong turns along the way, but her character is pretty interesting throughout.

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