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Plot: A battle-hardened American political consultant is sent to help re-elect a controversial president in Bolivia, where she must compete with a long-term rival working for another candidate. Runtime: 107 mins Release Date: 30 Oct 2015
This stands out as one of Sandra Bullock's more nuanced . . . (by oscaralbert)
. . . and better film roles, as she stays mostly UNDER the top unlike such of her misfires as ALL ABOUT STEVE . Though the end credits seem to leave out a butt double for Ms. Bullock's mooning scene during the bus chase, that may have been just an oversight. OUR BRAND IS CRISIS explains how Americans have a hand in any significant world event, even in high-altitude locales known mostly for llamas and lithium, such as Bolivia. Bullock's haunted "Calamity Jane" character here ends up defecting to this mountainous nation, even while she's mostly barfing when not sucking <more>
oxygen from a green metal tank on wheels . She wins a game of "Name That Quote" against Billy Bob Thornton, picking up the proverbial "brass ring" perhaps filled with Billy Bob's ex- Angelina Pitt's blood . But then Jane dissolves into the unsettled masses South of the Border, not unlike DEVIL'S DICTIONARY author Ambrose Bierce. Hopefully, Ms. Bullock herself will stay in touch with America enough to headline more provocative films such as CRISIS.
This is a great movie.I don't ask much to call a movie great. All it requires is a well-told story, engaging performances, watchable images, appropriate soundtrack and editing... that everyone do their jobs competently and it show me something I have not seen before. So about one movie in thirty does it and keeps me coming back to see the same old same old done again and again. Most of those tend to be older movies, simply because after more than a century of making movies, it's hard to find something new to say to an audience. The great ones keep me looking and not learning Spanish <more>
so I can read DON QUIXOTE in the original. This movie justifies my not learning a new language.There are many intelligent parts to the screenplay, which has serious things to say about governing and democracy. Let me also note that there are several Oscar-worthy performances in this one, including Miss Bullock's, Mr. Thornton's, Mr. Almeda and a small, compelling one by Zoe Kazan. In fact, there are several other performances that would be Oscar-worthy, but Mr. Green's direction is so assured that everyone is excellent. This is a fine, funny, harrowing movie and if it not considered a great one by some people, they are simply mistaken.
"It's personal" ... "It's like a Sicilian blood-feud" (by guchrisc)
Competing Bolivian Presidential candidates hire competing campaign teams and spin-doctors from the USA. This was the true scenario for a 2005 documentary made by Rachel Boynton. The documentary entitled 'Our Brand Is Crisis' has now inspired the making of this film of the same name. This reviewer has not seen that documentary and therefore will review this film solely on it's own merits. However, if the events in the documentary were similar to the fictional events in the film, then it was clear that this film deserved to get made.The film opens with sound only and we quickly <more>
realize that someone is getting miked up for an interview. Then the vision comes on to reveal a very beautiful Sandra Bullock. She is asked to look back to earlier days, thus this film starts out like 'Up Close & Personal' 1996 . However, rather than focusing on the media, this film concentrates on politics, but not so much the politicians, but rather the spin-doctors who operate the dark arts.Two political campaigners, in reality public-relations people, want to recruit an expendable spin-doctor. Thus they approach Sandra Bullock's character, known as Calamity Jane because of her past failures. She is now retired, and has now gone hippie, and spends her time making pots. They attempt to recruit her to save the failing campaign of a faded and uninspiring candidate. More impressed with his good-looking opponent, she only agrees to help when it is revealed that her spin-doctor arch- enemy, played by Billy Bob Thornton, is working for the opponent.The early Bolivian scenes are played mainly for laughs, as are some other scenes in the film. A chase is a standout hilarious scene. Some of the interplay between Miss Bullock and Mr Thornton is also very funny as well as clever and witty. Peter Straughan should be applauded for his screenplay.However, the film is not all laughs by any means. Rather it is a drama, with some comedy, some of it black. Calamity Jane is really like a fish out of water in the early political scenes. However, an event, which will be immediately recognizable to many British viewers, as it mirrors a real-life event, brings the campaign to life, and Calamity Jane, as she chooses fear over love, thus takes the film down a different road than the UK reality. The reference to Niccolo Machiavelli, is not the only one in the film. Sun Tzu quotes are also thrown around as the political spin-doctors wage war in this intelligent and serious political drama.Calamity Jane's candidate for President is played by Joaquim de Almeida. He plays an uninspiring, distrusted, and even despised, former President, attempting to get back into power. At the very least he seems to lack the common touch. Mr Almeida, in 'Only You' 1994 , played a suave and sophisticated love interest. Here, Mr Almeida, as the presidential candidate, slowly starts to show some of that same charisma. However, his opponent, played by Louis Arcella, seems much more charismatic, and looks rather like the footballer Maradonna btw . Both actors in their roles as presidential hopefuls seem authentic, so too the scenes of debates and meetings.Bolivian-born actor Reynaldo Pacheco gives a breathtakingly good performance as a campaign worker. Zoe Kazan who played the title role in 'Ruby Sparks' 2012 , Ann Dowd, and Anthony Mackie, all also give good support as members of the campaign team.Sandra Bullock, renowned for her comedy and romantic roles, in 2013 starred in the space-drama 'Gravity'. Here her fans will love and hate in equal measures the character she plays in this entertaining and funny, but serious, political drama. It is said that politics is show- business for ugly people. Some politicians are acclaimed like rock- stars. However, the very best spin-doctors from half-way round the world, are sought after, like world-class footballers who are transferred between clubs and across continents for large sums of money.Director David Gordon Green did not put a foot wrong in this very impressive film. The cast all gave tremendous performances. Sandra Bullock and George Clooney produced this film, but it is no vanity project, but rather a very serious political drama that builds to a very powerful and tense climax. The film thus entertains, informs, and educates, rather like the recent 'The Big Short' 2016 , and all involved should be rightly proud of their work. 10/10.
"When I was young, I admired certain politicians and statesmen. Then I met them " (by krabat-0)
It seems to me none of the previous 30-something reviews get the project. For it IS a project. It IS a political film.Sandra Bullock knows HER brand and she uses it well. It is the staff of Bullock magic, with which she sprinkles life into a rather boring topic - and makes a rather non-dramatic, dare I say Almost Realistic", script relevant? SB and her co-producer, George Clooney - who is also a brand-aware actor, who uses HIS brand well, alternately for earning money and for teaching youngsters about the world - are right on the money with this story of How Politics Are Wrought And The <more>
Consequences Of Wanting Power Enough To Risk The Fallout.Sandra Bullock is the campaign manager, who long ago lost faith in politics as a way to change the world. "When I was young, I admired certain politicians and statesmen. Then I met them " When opportunity comes begging, she is lured out of a deliberate hiatus by the chance to get even with an old colleague. What follows is a lesson - albeit 101 - in coming back from the dead, when you have forsaken every ideal you once had for vengeance or fame or money or just for doing it, again, and again. Leaving the hamster wheel of old habits and lost self-respect is no easy measure, but like she says to a politician at one point during a TV-debate on the campaign trail: "If you should feel something there, in the heat of the moment, something real, just turn your face to the camera". And when SHE feels something for the first time in years, tentatively she follows her own advice - though not for any other gain than to win back her own self-respect. The power she had traded in for anger, pride, whatever.I gave it 9/10 - not because of the script, even if it is very, very honed down to basics, and not for the many dramatically correct internal references the fly in the mask, the mask on the face , nor for its unusual setting in Bolivia, or for its very true to life representation of the Bolivian willingness to believe and their almost innocent disappointment and anger, when politicians lie to them yet again, or because of the very beautiful depiction of a politician in new-found power, who is uneasy with the consequences of have lied, or for the faith in the project as a whole, speaking on a very understandable level, with Sandra Bulluck being true to Sandra Bullock in every scene admit it, she brightens every movie she's in! - but for all of it. You can watch it again and again, because it's not dangerous, but its message is effective: The cost of power is power. But hope of liberation is offered to all. Do you take it?I would.
From an entertainment perspective the film was enjoyable and the climax was satisfactory and fulfilling. In fact those end scenes built up to quite a powerful and thought provoking finish which was a nice turn in pace in comparison to the rest of the movie - which focused more on comedy. The film had a good mix of seriousness and humor.The Script was pretty tight and displayed some humorous moments which did not detract from the story. It also had real heart. The choice of setting was really interesting. It allowed the film was show how people go in to countries with no consideration of the <more>
consequences of their actions and then happily leave as if nothing ever happened. Sandra Bullock's character was pretty intricate and multi-layered which was really cool to watch and her acting talents were strong in bringing out the various aspects of the character. Also, I would like to note that showing a strong woman in politics was bold and great to watch as she tried to thrive in the dog-eat-dog world of male-dominated politics. Sandra did a great job in applying these difficulties to her character and how it ground her down in some ways and drove her on in others. There were some moments where I was laughing, or shouting at the screen the bus scene or truly felt the intensity of the emotions of the characters the ending . All in all I thoroughly enjoyed this film and can't believe I hadn't heard more about it upon its release. 9/10
Morally Dubious, Adversarial and Everything Political PR is! (by organicsocial)
There is no 'bad' Sandra Bullock movie. But that's my opinion. Our Brand is Crisis reaffirms my belief. It is well paced with sufficiently despicable characters for the story and a cathartic ending. Its a dirty enough political drama and its as dry as the whole business gets. It gets my thumbs up for showing the drab side of political PR that is in reality. Yes, it is absolutely mindnumbingly uninteresting and hollow. Sorry, there's nothing entertaining about political consultants who sold their soul to the devil years ago and are now living for the paychecks that come from <more>
installing bad leaders to power, fully aware of the moral deprivation of their job.It surely would take a certain audience to enjoy this movie. I am thinking of media representatives and political image managers. They must appreciate the depths to which Bullock's character sinks to finally stick it to the adversary, the rival consultant played by Billy Bob. He's so masterful at playing obnoxious roles. Although, I think he got a little shadowed by nastiness of our fierce, Sun Tzu quoting protagonist. Things got way more personal than they normally should but there's nothing normal about American consultants trying to guide leaders in countries where they don't understand the native language and have no clue of the local culture. In fact, the original documentary that this film is based on, goes as far as to claim that this mismatch of perspectives ultimately hurts the future governments in those countries as people basically lose trust in their leaders. If you love Veep then you'll like this as well. It has those moments of indiscretion that makes the Julia Louis-Dreyfus series so funny. With political campaigning becoming more and more about advertising and less about policy, leaders have become extremely frivolous about their promises. They just want to win the election. This attitude is fueled by more aggressive PR managers who plan for every little act to contribute towards maximum exposure. Whether you fit the narrative to the man or fit the man in the narrative, you know that democracy is about winning the majority vote. Thus the usual trickery of one-upmanship has to ensue, even at the risk of driving the campaign bus down the abyss.
It's been awhile since Sandra Bullock has been able to immerse herself in a role. It's wonderful to see her back on the screen. Her character here is a political strategist who's flawed in ways that make her appealing. No other actress does sarcasm and feisty in the same breath as well as Bullock. Especially when she does it with a subtle nod to humility. This is a movie which will not appeal to everyone because it's about a political campaign and campaigns are the same whether in the U.S. or in another country. Unless you appreciate the games played in getting anyone elected <more>
this will feel labored. The entire cast is excellent. Thornton and Bullock apparently are friends off-screen and their scenes together aren't nearly enough as they are out for the same result. One of the smarter movies I've seen this year.
8.1 of 10. Not quite as enjoyable as the 2005 documentary that it's named after, but definitely adds to the story and makes it more exciting and funnier for those not into political documentaries.It also provides a better look at Bolivia. Much of the documentary is stuck inside or looking at the politicians when they occasionally step outside. Here, the film explores the country and goes where the documentary, possibly for safety reasons, never treaded.The acting and casting is surprisingly good. Not the people you'd expect for the main roles, yet they fit in extraordinarily well.Not <more>
the best politically natured film of the year that goes to Big Short , but definitely the best and most insightful film on modern election politics and "democracy".
I went into the theater expecting a comedy, since that was what the commercial I saw had advertised. I quickly forgot about that expectation and enjoyed this movie as a thoughtful, well- acted drama with some light-hearted moments included. I must say, the biggest marketing mistake was labeling this movie a comedy at all.I love Sandra Bullock across the board, and here I recognized, again, how much I enjoy having her pull on my heart-strings. The plot was engaging and the supporting actors did a good job fleshing out the details. From my perspective, the movie reminded me of times in my own <more>
life in which I needed to revisit an old wound in order to move through it as a person. Loved it.