In The Loop
Politics were never as funny as this
"In The Loop" does to politics, what politics has done to our world for years.....virtually spin it into a huge political joke. For those who are growing tired of the endlessly slap stick style comedy that Hollywood favors these days, then "In The Loop" offers probably one of funniest high brow political comedies that you'll ever see. Rather than settling for the cheap laughs, like so many other comedies do, this film has a different approach. Poking fun at the hypocrisy surrounding politics, while showing how little half truths and lies can often lead to decisions of war. Indeed, for those who have seen the British version of "The Office", starring Ricky Gervais, the style of "In The Loop" is very similar to that. Offering a grounded and natural style of movie making, that most films tend to lack.
Although the film does suffer from a lot of pacing issues. As it seems there are a lot of scenes that tend to drag along a bit longer than they should. Especially, when the main characters argue with each other over the politics of going to war. However, that's not to say this is a bad film by any means.
The story is essentially about how the U.S. President and the UK Prime Minister fancy a war, but not everyone is supporting it. Lt. General George Miller (James Gandolfini) and the Secretary of State for International Development, Simon Foster (Tom Hollander), are completely against the idea. Unfortunately for Simon, due to a few misquotes and rumors, he accidentally gets labeled as backing the war. Needless to say, Simon gains a few close friends up in Washington D.C., for this little error. If Simon can somehow become in league with the right people up in Washington D.C. or if his entourage can sleep with the right people, then they might have a chance to stop the war. Or maybe if they can somehow stop the Prime Minister's media spin doctor, Malcolm Tucker (Peter Capaldi), from rigging the votes at the UN to be in favor of war, then they might be able to stop everything. If not, then they can always fire their Director of Communications, Judy Molloy (Gina McKee), who they never liked that much anyway. Indeed, "In The Loop" is a political comedy of international proportions.
Out of all the actors in this movie, I thought Peter Capaldi, Tom Hollander and James Gandolfini were by far the best performers of this one. Peter plays the jerk and manipulator so well, that audiences will not only laugh, whenever he curses out the Prime Minister's staff, but they'll love hating him as well. Indeed, Peter takes the role of Malcolm Tucker, and spins it into one political joke that will leave the viewer busting at the seems, at some of his exploits.
James Gandolfini does an excellent job portraying the tough as nails military soldier but in the end, he becomes conflicted between his obligations as a U.S. General and to his personal objections to the war. This opens up a lot of underlining themes to the movie as well. Plus, the argument that he gets into with Malcolm is simply hilarious, as they both try to prove who's top dog in this political agenda game. Then there's Tom Hollander, whom plays the political moron that really just wants to save his own skin by the end of the day. Which leaves open a lot of political jokes, about how clueless and moronic our politicians can often be.
The story line seemed very original and refreshing, and I loved how the style of comedy was similar to the British version of "The Office." Using witty and authentic style of comedy, generated from real life situations, that allows for the viewer to be able to identify with the main characters more. Sure, it would've been easy for this movie to be another cliched comedy, but "In The Loop" doesn't go for the cheap laughs. No, this movie chooses more of a sophisticated style that pokes fun at our modern culture and politics.
Overall, "In The Loop" is definitely a great comedy in it's own right. Although the pacing does tend to make the movie seem longer than it should be, it's still a very good movie to watch. Especially, if you're tired of seeing the same old low brow comedies every year, then "In The Loop" might be right up your alley.