Tuesday, November 12, 2019

The Report - 2019 Hawaii International Film Festival Movie Review

The Movie: The Report

The Director: Scott Z. Burns

The Cast: Adam Driver, Annette Bening, Jon Hamm, Linda Powell, Corey Stoll, Maura Tierney, Michael C. Hall, Joanne Tucker, Ian Blackman, Douglas Hodge, T. Ryder Smith, Tim Blake Nelson, Scott Shepherd, Ted Levine, Matthew Rhys, Kate Beahan

The Story: Idealistic Senate staffer Daniel J. Jones, tasked by his boss to lead an investigation into the CIA's post 9/11 Detention and Interrogation Program, uncovers shocking secrets.

The Review:
Adam Driver is an amazing actor. Pretty much everything he does is top notch  and I feel like he's just now starting to hit his stride as a mainstream leading man. In this movie, he plays Senate staffer Daniel J. Jones, the man known for his investigation into post 9/11 interrogation techniques. To be honest, the character is pretty straight forward and there isn't a lot of real juicy material for Driver to work with yet he still manages to stand his ground with Annette Bening and Jon Hamm.

The real meat of this movie is in the discoveries that are uncovered along the way and just how deep the government was and sometimes in over their head on the detention and interrogation programs. Things play out in a similar fashion to movies like The Big Short and Spotlight where, the father down the rabbit hole the investigators go, the more absurd and often times illegal, everything becomes.

Scott Z. Burns, who is a seasoned veteran film maker when it comes to writing screenplays like The Bourne Ultimatum, Contagion, and Side Effects and puts that experience to good use in what is just his second feature film as a director and first since 2006 when he made his debut. The result is a motion picture that tackles some pretty heavy material with ease and never gets bogged down in the piles of available information while also letting the cast dig into the well written screenplay.

The Report is a well crafted expose on a very troubling time for our government and the country as a whole and features standout performances from the cast highlighted by Adam Driver in the lead role.

The Report is an official selection of the 2019 Hawaii International Film Festival.

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