Michael Clayton

Michael Clayton ★★★★

The truth is not always true. Michael Clayton plays in shadows, creating a legal thriller of the highest order which is unpredictable moment to moment. The excellent script is full of textured dialogue that has both realism and theatricality. The score is amazing, sparse and forever tense, creating constant footsteps of fear. There are scenes that exist as nothing but vibes and music, embracing ice cold contemplation and a very cool style. It's a film about people who live a soul-sucking existence and is dark and cynical in those regards. They aren't the people directly affected by the worst consequences of corporate greed, but this is a film about the inside game, not a story where the evil is seen from the outside. Michael Clayton is the story of those who enable corporate wrongdoing, the pawns who work for law firms and bend to the will of the moneyed interests. Some characters are bathed in guilt owing to their contributions to the heartless corporate world which has given cover to awful, immoral corporations and interest groups. This rotten chain of evil is the backbone of modern society. Michael Clayton is a fantastic thriller, with layered social relevance and an amazing execution.

Academy Award for Best Picture Nominees Ranked