Movie Review: HAIL, CAESAR!
STAR RATING (out of 5): ****
HAIL, CAESAR! is a love letter to the old days of Hollywood, told through the eyes of Eddie Mannix (Josh Brolin), a studio fixer. Baird Whitlock (George Clooney), the star of a big sandal picture, mysteriously vanishes off-set, prompting Mannix to look for him. After watching this film, it’s safe to say you won’t find yourself hailing the plot structure.
THE GOOD: Some things you can hail include the star studded cast, featuring the likes of Ralph Fiennes, Scarlett Johansson, Channing Tatum, and more. It’s amazing the Coen Brothers could perfectly fit so many big actors into the film. They all deliver versatile and entertaining performances. The script is really funny and got lots of laughs from me and the audience. There’s a cool gimmick where we see movies within movies, mostly from a behind the scenes viewpoint, that are stunningly similar to the real deal and keep you engaged. The setting is captured perfectly with some artsy cinematography.
THE BAD: As I mentioned before, the plot structure is a mess. Instead of sticking to a central story, it’s really more a portrait of the working life in 1950’s Hollywood. Also, Clooney is severely underused, and his story arc feels out of place.
BEST SCENE: One of the movie within movie scenes, where a movie star known for cowboy movies, performs in a drama. The scene being shot requires many takes due to the star’s lack of skills. This scene provides some of the film’s best dialogue and acting, and is pretty funny.
WORST SCENE: The big villain reveal near the end. Very misplaced.
THE VERDICT: Hail, Caesar! is a very entertaining film with a great cast. You’ll have a blast, despite this movie’s flawed plot. I’m hailing it to the tune of 4 out of 5 stars.