“Much of the atmosphere and the action of Body of Lies is familiar [with] director Ridley Scott flipping back and forth from Washington to the Middle East, from drone surveillance to the street, from explosions and scenes of torture to men tearing across the desert with guns blazing. But the movie is smart and tightly drawn; it has a throat-gripping urgency and some serious insights, and Scott has a greater command of space and a more explicit way with violence than most thriller directors.” — from David Denby‘s New Yorker review, dated 10.13.08.
I sat through this thing unperturbed and for the most part unaroused. I love high-craft thrillers, and you know Scott will always be a master of this sort of thing. But there’s nothing going on in this film — nothing that seems to really matter beyond the fact that it’s hard not to like and care about Leonardo DiCaprio‘s CIA character, named Roger Ferris. But that’s mainly a loyalty-intrigue thing I have for DiCaprio, the actor. I’ll pay to see him in just about anything. (I suspect he’ll be giving the big go-to performance in Sam Mendes‘ Revolutionary Road.)
All I know is that I’ve tried to write a Body of Lies review three times since Friday, and it just wouldn’t come. That’s not my fault. There’s just not very much there, although at no point was I bored or bothered. BOL was somewhere between mildly and marginally satisfying every step of the way, but I doubt if I’ll ever watch it again. Unless I’m on a plane next year and dead bored. It’s a tweener — no love, no hate. Nothing kicking in or kicking out on the way to the parking lot.