Arts + Culture » Film + TV

Body of Lies

It's exciting now and then.

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Roger Ferris (Leonardo DiCaprio) is a CIA field operative in the Middle East. He comes face-to-face with the politics and emotions his superiors---armchair warriors who can order a kill without feeling---don't have to think about. Roger's boss Ed Hoffmann (Russell Crowe) is able to multitask taking care of his kids while making illicit commands over his cell phone. This is the dramatic interest in Ridley Scott's Body of Lies. This is Scott's eighth movie released in the last nine years. Like many of the others, it's big scale, displays an artist in control of his medium and is worth seeing in the theatre. But also like many of the others, it's just short of satisfying. The movie is over-complicated without a real hook. As a result, it keeps starting and stopping through different episodes, many of them punctuated by a title screen of whichever city the action's moved into. DiCaprio does what he can in an adult performance. It's just that Roger, who is both altruistic and smugly impatient, hasn't fully been realized in the writing stage. Due to its ragged nature, Body of Lies is moments of intrigue broken up by moments of being briefed on story developments. Sometimes, it's exciting.

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