Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Not Everyone Will Enjoy the Quirky Hollywood Satire of 'Hail, Caesar!'

Hail, Caesar! isn’t for everyone.  It’s a typical Coen brothers film.  For those who are familiar and appreciative of their style, this movie is a treat.  But casual moviegoers might find it difficult to recognize its merits.

The movie follows a day’s work of a studio “fixer” named Eddie Mannix (Josh Brolin), whose job requires him to solve various problems for Capitol Pictures, like keeping the scandalous behaviors of its stars out of the press.  In this particular working day, Mannix has to deal with several affairs, which includes securing the release of Baird Whitlock (George Clooney) – the star of Hail, Caesar!, an epic movie set in ancient Rome – after being kidnapped by a group called “The Future.”

Fans of Hollywood – by that, I don’t mean only its movies, but its culture and history as well – will love the satirical precision of Hail, Caesar!.  It’s an eccentric comedy that not every moviegoer will find easy to grasp and enjoy.  In fact, many might find it boring or hard to follow.  And yet to those who bother to labor through the movie, there’s something delightful and insightful to be gained from it.

As for me, I didn’t strongly like it.  I feel that much of its humor and appeal are hinge on deep familiarity with Hollywood history and culture – something I don’t really have.  But I did recognize its success as an overall film.  It has beautiful shots, fantastic production value, enjoyable performances from its all-star cast, and a clear vision in its direction.  However, as far as grasping the true value of this movie is concerned, I was only able to be acquainted with the surface of its intrinsic quirky charm.

I had fun with Hail, Caesar! all in all.  It’s a pretty entertaining movie.  However, it’s something I find good enough to watch one time, but isn’t rewarding enough to go rewatch.

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