State of Play ★★★★

Rather conventional but solid and intellectually stimulating movie in the investigative-journalism genre that effectively uses relatively simple means to build suspense (the best example of that is the sequence that takes place in an underground parking garage) and manages to be engaging even when the viewer is—or at least thinks they are—one step ahead of the protagonists. Somewhat disappointingly, the final piece of the puzzle comes by way of one of the oldest tricks in the book: someone demonstrates knowledge of something they should not know. Russell Crowe shines in the lead role and is very nicely complemented by Rachel McAdams; while Ben Affleck’s performance is fairly good overall, there are scenes in which it does not quite work; Helen Mirren is expectedly professional but has little to do in a limited role. Directed with appropriate restraint by Kevin Macdonald. Based on the British miniseries "State of Play".