Rent Michael Clayton (2007)

3.4 of 5 from 660 ratings
1h 54min
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Synopsis:
Michael Clayton (George Clooney) is an in-house "fixer" at one of the largest corporate law firms in New York. At the behest of the firm’s co-founder Marty Bach (Sydney Pollack), Clayton, a former prosecutor from a family of cops, takes care of Kenner, Bach & Ledeen’s dirtiest work. Clayton cleans up clients’ messes, handling anything from hit-and-runs and damaging stories in the press to shoplifting wives and crooked politicians. Though burned out and discontented in his job, Clayton is inextricably tied to the firm.
At the agrochemical company U/North, the career of in-house chief counsel Karen Crowder (Tilda Swinton) rests on the settlement of the suit that Kenner, Bach & Ledeen is leading to a seemingly successful conclusion. When the firm’s top litigator, the brilliant Arthur Edens (Tom Wilkinson), has an apparent breakdown and tries to sabotage the entire case, Marty Bach sends Michael Clayton to tackle this unprecedented disaster and, in doing so, Clayton comes face to face with the reality of who he has become.
Actors:
, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,
Directors:
Voiced By:
Danielle Skraastad, Thomas McCarthy, Jonathan Walker, Cynthia Mace, Michael Countryman, Andrew Hunter Sherman, Tony Gilroy
Writers:
Tony Gilroy
Others:
Jennifer Fox, James Newton Howard, Kerry Orent, John Gilroy
Studio:
Pathe
Genres:
Drama, Thrillers
Awards:

2008 BAFTA Best Supporting Actress

2008 Oscar Best Supporting Actress

BBFC:
Release Date:
18/02/2008
Run Time:
115 minutes
Languages:
English
Subtitles:
None
DVD Regions:
Region 2
Formats:
Pal
Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen 2.35:1
Colour:
Colour
BBFC:
Release Date:
01/02/2010
Run Time:
114 minutes
Languages:
English
Subtitles:
English Hard of Hearing
Formats:
Pal
Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen 2.35:1
Colour:
Colour
Bonus:
  • Director's commentary
  • Deleted scenes with optional director's commentary
  • Theatrical trailer

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Reviews (10) of Michael Clayton

Nice and watchable - Michael Clayton review by JD

Spoiler Alert
04/09/2009

A good film worth watching but pretty unremarkable. Too similar to other Clooney films. Thriller is not a good description, though it keeps ones interest going.

1 out of 5 members found this review helpful.

Boring - Michael Clayton review by Ang

Spoiler Alert
13/06/2008

Had to turn it off half way through. My husband also found it very boring. Very rare we feel we can't watch a film!

0 out of 4 members found this review helpful.

Mean, Moody & Mediocre - Michael Clayton review by Count Otto Black

Spoiler Alert
27/06/2015

I think this may be another of those films where a best-selling novel with a lot of wordy introspection but very few striking visual images was poorly adapted for the screen. George Clooney scowls well, and expresses self-doubt tipping over into self-loathing like a pro, but not a lot really happens.

The very first scene has a voice-over by a supporting character who has suffered a severe mental breakdown in which he hallucinated hideous and extraordinary things a director like Terry Gilliam would have had a ball with, but what we actually see, after the credits have finished rolling over urban scenery, is his voice coming out of an answering machine in an empty office. The whole film has this problem - it's the first courtroom drama I've ever seen without one single courtroom scene!

The massive court-case the hero's law firm has been fighting for six years on behalf of evil industrialists? Entirely offscreen. The evil they've done that forms the moral crux of the whole movie? Never even glimpsed. Our hero's troubled relationships with various members of his family? Almost entirely offscreen, especially the allegedly tremendously important problems he has with his alcoholic brother, who's in the movie for about a minute. His gambling addiction? Represented by one very brief scene (though we do see it twice); and so on. And then of course there's that spectacular mental breakdown, the event which kicks off the entire story, but which we don't get to see, other than a brief found-footage video clip of the least dramatic part of it that stops just when it was getting interesting. Still, the characters describe all the action we've missed to each other, so at least we know it happened.

Apart from our hero scowling at himself until he's finally pushed so far that he does the right thing, we aren't properly shown much of anything, and there's a lot of baggage which feels as though it was important in the book but the movie didn't have room to do it properly, such as the subplot in which the mentally unbalanced character comes to believe that the bizarre events in a children's fantasy novel are real, which is constantly referenced as if it'll be crucial but ends up going absolutely nowhere, or the many supposedly important characters who appear for precisely long enough to establish that they exist, and not one second longer.

Oddest of all, at the end the film suddenly changes its style and starts behaving like a thriller, even though the sequence in which this occurs generates no suspense whatsoever, owing to the fact that we know exactly what's going to happen because we already saw it 90 minutes ago! And what's the Clooney character's vitally important job supposed to be anyway? As far as I could tell, it's being the only person in a firm employing 600 lawyers who doesn't have zero common sense and even less charisma. Is that an actual job? I doubt it!

Courtroom drama with no courtroom and very little drama, in which George Clooney seldom looks at all happy, and Tilda Swinton never looks at all well. Don't bother.

0 out of 2 members found this review helpful.

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