Dir: George Clooney | Co-writers: Cast: Julianne Moore, Matt Damon, Oscar Isaac, Noah Jupe | Drama | US | 105′
Matt Damon and Julianne Moore star in this seductive but flawed satire that touches on social greed, marital dissatisfaction and insurance fraud. Directed by Clooney from a script by Joel and Ethan Coen, Suburbicon parades as a pastel and pristine 1950s family drama, but behind the scenes matters are going seriously awry in the moral compass of its squeaky clean citizens.
Gardner Lodge (Damon) is a family man who is clearly dissatisfied with his seemingly peaceful existence due to his desire for Margaret (Moore), his crippled wife’s live-in sister. Gardner and Margaret form a covert plan to stage a home invasion, collect the insurance money, and clear the decks of his wife (also played by Moore) and run away to Aruba. But the idea flounders due to the interference of Oscar Isaac’s shrewd loss adjuster – echoing TV detective Columbo – and Gardner’s appealingly astute son (Noah Jupe).
This 1950s pastiche plays out in the style of a Noirish version of Mad Men that reveals a tawdry face racial hatred and marital disquiet behind the manicured gardens of this plastic paradise. Performances are pitch-perfect as the tale’s tone claws at the edges of unsettling paranoia. SUBURBICON is ultimately a suspenseful and highly entertaining film that throws its toys out of the pram in a misjudged melodramtic meltdown in the final scenes.
George Clooney was born in Lexington, Kentucky. He is an Academy Award–winning actor, producer, writer, and director. His filmmaking credits include Good Night, and Good Luck (05), and the Festival selection The Ides of March (11). Suburbicon(17) is his latest film. MT
NOW ON GENERAL RELEASE | VENICE FILM FESTIVAL 2017 REVIEW