04 December, 2020

The Good German

It aspires to great heights but doesn't reach there. Though engaging, it's not entirely satiating.

The Good German
Starring: George Clooney, Cate Blanchett, Tobey Maguire
Directed by Steven Soderbergh
Rating: **

I went looking for Casablanca in The Good German. No doubt there are reminders of the classic, specially the last scene of the lady love getting away in the airplane but in spirit, Soderbergh seems to be referring more to Carol Reed’s The Third Man. Only, he replaces war-ravaged Vienna with Berlin. The bombed-out cityscape, the dank alleys, the underground hideaways, the deep secrets, the unending searches and the unyielding suspense, the decay, racketeering and corruption—all of it kept flashing that iconic Third Man scene in my mind—of Harry Lime, ie Orson Welles, virtually rising from the dead in the darkness of the tunnel, the personification of a festering society.

To be fair to Soderbergh, he manages to create the film noir feel quite well. It is stylishly mounted and wonderful to look at. But the flip side...



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