Burn After Reading
The Coen Brothers nail another comedy with a wonderful cast playing wonderful, screwball characters. This movie is a riot. The cast includes George Clooney, Frances McDormand, John Malkovich, Tilda Swinton, and Brad Pitt.
Malkovich is superb as Osbourne Cox, a fired CIA agent who writes his memoirs in defiance of the agency that dumped him. A copy of his memoirs ends up in the hands of the employees of a local gym - Linda Litzke (McDormand) and Chad Feldheimer (Pitt), who are incredibly dumb and driven. They try to blackmail Cox, and the story spirals into complete chaos.
George Clooney should stop acting for anyone other than the Coen brothers. I don't know what they have that brings out the lunatic in Clooney, but every time he's in a Coen movie, he does the best job he's ever done. He's a good actor the other times, but for the Coens, he's one of the best of today's actors. Malkovich is excellent all the time, and he's used by the Coens superbly - well, I said superb about him a paragraph ago, but it's still the right word. His physical comedy here is hilarious. He's a great actor, and he gets to let it all out as Cox.
Among the nice things about this movie is that there are no babes (well, maybe Pitt, but we'll think more about that later), no slow-motion martial arts fights, no big gun fights with full automatic weapons, just funny scene after funny scene, with a few shockers thrown in to keep us off-balance. Pay attention - you'll be well-rewarded. I don't think there was a wasted scene in the whole shebang.