Sleuth ★★★★★

I went in knowing nothing. That's really the only way to do it, so if you're interested in literate, funny movies featuring fantastic acting, go now to watch this movie. Here is a story of a young British man and an old British man. Each is (or was) in love with a woman, and they match wits and witticisms as they fight over her. Michael Caine is a man of low birth and a hair dresser while Lawrence Olivier is the woman's current husband and an eccentric crime novelist. The movie, based on an award winning play, then becomes a game between the two and an examination of identity. Caine hides his commoner status in the presence of Olivier's overwhelming nostalgia for Britain's glory days. The set is one large house furnished with about a billion insane things including an all white puzzle and a menagerie of anamatronic toys. It's his world and we're just living in it. Or is it? And are we? The tables turn and turn and it's a delight. Olivier and Caine are obviously great, perfectly cast for their respective roles and newcomer Alec Cawthorne is pretty good as an inspector investigating... something. At nearly 2 hours and 20 minutes the movie never feels long because we're never fully sure of what's happening. There's also a bit of metaphor with games standing in for storytelling that really pushes my buttons. It's a fantastic movie and one that has a shot at next year's top 100 list for sure.