Thursday, December 17, 2009

Under 250: In the Loop

In the Loop may be a case in which my expectations were just too lofty for the film itself to actually succeed. The critical reception, the premise, everything pointed to a political satire that might manage to be on par with Dr. Strangelove. Or, you know, not. Granted, the satire is en pointe. Director Armando Iannucci's tale of muddled affairs between Britain and America gets a lot of things right and succeeds in setting politics up against the firing wall. It's brutal, smart, and has its moments of laugh out loud hilarity...it's just....well, in its non-stop battle of the dim wits, its characters sort of outstay their welcome. The film is based on a BBC drama "The Thick of It", a shorter BBC program that one can only hope was more encapsulated. In an abbreviated form, the dialogue and comedy could be relentless. For the first half of the film, it is. In that second half, though, I was done. I got the point, i'd heard the jokes, i'd appreciated the references, all the rest felt like indulgent comedic masturbation, killing and obscuring the plots and points until the audience no longer cared and just wanted to get away. I watched because i felt an obligation, but was rarely rewarded for sticking around. As a statement on contemporary politics, i suppose that might be the point. Either way, i couldn't stop the disappointed, irritated sighs.


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