A Most Wanted Man

A Most Wanted Man ★★★½

On one hand I am glad to see PSH go out with a smaller, intriguing premise, espionage thriller type. On the other hand, I would have liked to have seen a real "tour de Force" performance out of him as well. Hey, since we do not know when we will die, all we can do is what is right in front of us, right? And this film did not disappoint. It was smart with clear direction while using a bit of misdirection at times. PSH was great as the chain-smoking, aging head of a small "in the shadows" German anti terrorist group stationed for the time being in Hamburg.

The supporting characters are good, with Willem Dafoe, as usual, stealing all his scenes pretty effortlessly. Robin Wright is terrific as the head of the American task force, who threaten to expose Bachmann's team's plans to bring in a suspected terrorist for interrogation to determine if he is actually a threat or not. The Americans are, of course, played as the shoot first ask questions later brut force element of the story. Rachel McAdams takes a real nice turn here as a young slick lawyer who's dedication to the Islamic immigrant get's her caught up in the middle of the search. PSH is the star and he shines with his mannerisms and his ability to be so believable as a real person and not some "dime-a-dozen" Bourne Identity super Wiz who sits in front of a giant digital map that can scale the earth and follow people as they move. No, this is small scale Anti Terrorist tactics where one most use their intellect instead of their technology and try to put what evidence they have to use to determine what is happening. For that I applaud it.

Its not an action film, nor is it a real drama. its clear as day Espionage. Nothing more, nothing less. It uses what it knows to put print to screen a smart, small, thought-provocking piece of cinema. Its not a perfect film. It lacks character development and blows it with an ending that literally feels like they ran out of time an money. However, for a small film released in the middle of summer, its a great ways to distance yourself from huge robots and space aliens if that's your prerogative.

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