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Coen Bros. scraps

REVIEW! Julianne Moore and Matt Damon make a highly entertaining pair in SUBURBICON, but George Clooney's weakly revived Coen Brothers script struggles to make a real dent.

Based on a decades-old Coen brothers script that feels somewhat like a dry run for Fargo, George Clooney’s Suburbicon is a darkly comic tale of a botched domestic crime, set in a prototypical 1950s American suburb. It’s told from the perspective of young Nicky (Noah Jupe), who realises after the untimely death of his mother (Julianne Moore) that his father (Matt Damon) and aunt (also Julianne Moore) may not have his best interests at heart. In a bid to add weight to proceedings, Clooney throws a racial subplot into the mix, with the wider community revealing its true colours when a black family moves into town. But when these two narrative strands finally converge, it’s in service of a final act note of optimism for the future that feels wildly out-of-step with the America of 2017. Indeed, Clooney has conceded that he completed the film whilst confident that Clinton would triumph in last year’s election. Still, there’s a certain amount of fun to be had, with Damon and Moore hamming it up as an outlandishly immoral duo.

Suburbicon | Directed by George Clooney (US, 2017), with Matt Damon, Julianne Moore. Starts Nov 9.

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