Hail, Caesar! Oh, My!
Do yourself a favor and check out Hail, Caesar! Produced, written, and directed by Joel and Ethan Coen (the Coen brothers), this all-star comedy is set during Hollywood’s Golden Age of the 1950’s. I admit when I heard about all the stars in this movie I was afraid. So many movies with large star-filled casts end up being complete duds. I was pleasantly surprised that Josh Brolin, George Clooney, Ralph Fiennes, Jonah Hill, Scarlett Johansson, Frances McDormand, Tilda Swinton, and Channing Tatum were used to fill their respected roles with purpose.
Hail, Caesar is a movie about Josh Brolin’s character Eddie Mannix who is a fixer of problems with
motion pictures. Actors who go on benders, unwed pregnant starlets, actors who can’t act, directors who want different actors, and gossip columnists looking to break all these stories. The Coen brothers will probably never be invited to make certain movies such as – a mild romance, a sailor musical, a musical western, and a Bible story epic – as they show them being made on the soundstages in the movie. That’s okay; because the brief scenes we get to see prove the Coen brothers could make all of these types of movies. The film does a great job of pulling the viewer into the movies inside movies until the directors yell, cut!
Like Raising Arizona, this is a comedic kidnapping movie – even though Baird Whitlock, George Clooney’s, dimwitted character doesn’t understand the luncheon party he’s attending is a communist meeting and he’s been abducted. Eddie Mannix ponies up the ransom money while Baird has a nice time with the commies – complete with cucumber sandwiches! Mannix waits patiently for Eddie’s safe return, all the while dealing with crisis after crisis on the movie lot and going to confessional when he can make time. Throw in some odd subplots and you find yourself laughing most of the time.
I give this movie eight out of ten togas!