johnlink ranks THE MEN WHO STARE AT GOATS (2009)

I went into this movie with fairly high expectations. I loved the trailers, loved the cast, and was hoping for a film which would meet and exceed all expectations. I came away feeling like this was a good, though not great, experience.

This is a film about a group of military psychic spies. I watched THE MEN WHO STARE AT GOATS (2009) in the theater on 11.11.09. It was my first viewing of the film.

NOTE: THIS RANKING UTILIZES THIS SITE’S ORIGINAL SYSTEMIC ARTICLE WRITING METHOD. THE METHOD BY WHICH THE RANKINGS WERE ARRIVED AT, HOWEVER, REMAIN THE SAME.

FILM

This was a movie unsure of whether to mock or praise its subjects. That isn’t necessarily a criticism, as I came away feeling like the psychic subjects of the film probably felt the same way about themselves. I had an issue, thematically, with an allowed exodus of military detainees during the film’s climax. I in no way endorse torture, but I’m not sure that releasing said hostages into the desert constitutes a good decision.  Ultimately, this is a movie which wants to be more than it is. It makes statements about non-violence as a substitute for war, but doesn’t want to fully discuss these topics in a serious way. SCORE: 5

MOVIE

This would be a bit higher had I not seen the trailer. Several sequences were ruined by knowing exactly what came next. I hate that. Of the top ten funniest moments of the film, six or seven of them are in the trailer. Still, this is an entertaining flick, and you can do a lot worse. SCORE: 7

ACTING

Kevin Spacey is PERFECT. Of the previously mentioned top ten funniest moments, he probably has five or six of them through his fifteen minutes of screen time. Jeff Bridges is great, Clooney is very funny, and Ewan McGregor does the straight man thing. The scenes between these guys are consistently fun. Perfectly cast, and well acted. Easily the best aspect of this movie. SCORE: 8

WRITING

The end does not live up to its setup. It is not BURN AFTER READING bad, but it is not as good as I had hoped. This is too bad, because the rest of the script is solid. I like the switch between past and present, and like the dialogue very much. But the end of the film certainly results in a let down. SCORE: 6

FINAL TALLY

FILM: 5; MOVIE:7; ACTING: 8; WRITING: 6

5+7+8+6+0= 26

FINAL SCORE: 6.5

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~ by johnlink00 on November 11, 2009.

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