The Men Who Stare At Goats

The Men Who Stare At Goats” starring, George Clooney, Jeff Bridges, Ewan McGregor, and Kevin Spacey.The Men Who Stare At Goats

We went to see Disney’s new version of The Christmas Carol last night. But at the last minute we changed our minds and went to see “The Men Who Stare At Goats” instead. Why? That’s what some in our party wanted to see and, after all, how could you not be curious about a movie called “The Men Who Stare At Goats?” And besides, I was concerned I might be disappointed with yet another re-telling of Dickens’ holiday favorite.

Well, those who have called this movie quirky are right. It’s also funny and very original. You are led to believe it is a true story but I’m sure it’s only loosely based on a true story, which is good enough for Hollywood types. I only say that because I have researched remote viewing and this movie doesn’t get that quite right. But no matter; the premiss is so ridiculous that few movie goers will believe it anyway, and you don’t need to.

George Clooney plays his character, Lyn Cassady, much like he played Everett Ulysses McGill in, “Oh Brother, Where Art Thou.” Not that the two characters are the same, but he plays the character so straight you wonder if you’re supposed to laugh at him or not; but you can’t help it. The character is completely serious about himself and what he’s doing but what he is and what he’s doing is preposterous. Reporter Bob Wilton, (Ewan McGregor), plays along in order to get into Iraq with Cassady in 2002 to try to get his story and prove to his wife he’s something special; a serious, hard core journalist. But he doesn’t really believe in Cassady or any of the things he’s telling him. Who would?

This was definitely a laugh-out-loud flick. I didn’t realize it was rated “R” when I went in. It has brief partial nudity and a few short scenes with language that obviously earned it that rating. But what spoiled the film for me came at the end. As I said, it is a quirky, hilarious film. But it seemed as if underneath that it was going somewhere. Yet, about 10 minutes from the end it fell apart for me. All of a sudden it felt like the film makers remembered they needed to make a statement. In my case, I didn’t buy it. Some of our party didn’t care, and one even thought it was in keeping with the rest of the film. But for me the plot was so odd that I was anticipating everything would come clear and make sense at the end; instead I was totally disappointed. So after an hour and a half of enjoyment I felt cheated in the end.

Two and ½ Monkeys

Jim

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