Ides of March doesn’t reveal anything new besides what we know about dirty politics, but it’s a well acted and directed political thriller.

The Ides of March takes place during the frantic last days before a heavily contested Ohio presidential primary, when an up-and-coming campaign press secretary (Ryan Gosling) finds himself involved in a political scandal that threatens to upend his candidate’s shot at the presidency. — (C) Sony Pictures

Ides of March is driven by a solid performances and a well executed script. Ryan Gosling is exceptional as Stephen Myers, an idealistic staffer who firmly believes that his candidate Governor Morris, played by George Clooney, is the one. Everything is going according to plan until Myers meets with the rival’s campaign manager, Tom Duffy. This sparks a domino effect that threatens to destroy Myers career while a scandal involving an intern named Molly, Gosling’s love interest played by Evan Rachel Woods, further complicates the situation.

George Clooney’s straightforward directorial style makes every scene more potent than the last one. One scene held at the back of the kitchen where Myers and Morris square off is riveting. A close up of both actors intensifies the battle of wills, wherein you can’t really tell who’s calling the bluff.

While Myers moral parable rings true, the story doesn’t really say anything beyond what we really know about politics. Candidates use whatever dirt they can dig up to get ahead of the competition. Nothing is really black and white, and everyone is in it for the perks and not for leadership.

While the movie is mostly a political platitude, it’s still an engrossing film once the suspense starts kicking in.

My Rating: 7.5/10

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