CHARLIE WILSON'S WAR

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Charlie Wilson's War Cover Most people living on this Godforsaken planet know for a fact that war, killing, and mass slaughter in general, is basically a bad idea. In fact, it is such a f*cking terrible idea, there was a 100 minute movie made about it in 2007. It was Directed by Mike Nichols; and Starred: Tom Hanks, Julia Roberts, Ned Beatty, with Philip Seymour Hoffman.


Charlie Wilson's War : The Film - The Book


THE STORY:
Throughout my travels, Charlie Wilson (Tom Hanks), I've heard about some of the antics you've gotten involved with during yours. You know. Like how you've used your position of power as an American Congressmen to get drunk, get women, and basically get anything you want.

But having said that, Charlie, there is one thing about your recent trip to Afghanistan that's confused me quite a bit.

Well, just between the two us, of course, are you actually working on behalf of the Texan socialite, Joanne Herring (Julia Roberts), and trying to help the Afghan people against their Russian enemies? And if that is the case, how are going to accomplish such a mammoth task? Convince the President of Pakistan (Om Puri) with a meeting of minds? Or what about persuading this curry eating clod to join forces with Egypt and Israel, just so they can rally against a common soviet enemy?

Huh? What that you say, Mister Wilson? You think that's a great idea? My God. You are a nut, aren't you? Then again, that's most probably why what next transpires all goes for broke when you say to me, 'Gust Avrakotos (Philip Seymour Hoffman). Stop messing about with the CIA and come help me win a war'. As a mutual enemy just wants to kill-kill-kill - Congressman Doc Long (Ned Beatty) ends up footing the bill - maneuvering positions of power is a devilish skill - and at the end of the day, politics is nothing more than a feckless sugar pill.




THE REVIEW:
In no uncertain terms 'Charlie Wilson's War' is a message movie. And for me, the political message behind it was summed up perfectly in the last thing it had to say -- ‘These things happened. They were glorious and they changed the world... and then we f*cked up the end game’.

Charlie Wilson's War Starring Tom Hanks, Julia Roberts, and Philip Seymour Hoffman.
Well. Lets face it! Even though I'm sure there's a couple of good politicians out there, in the same breath I'm certain the opposite is also true.

But why is that though? Is it because -- as this flick illustrated  -- these people think of themselves more than others? Or is it something to do with them being brought up in a privileged society, and this taints them as if it were some sort genetic disposition?

I personally find this dilemma a difficult one to ascertain myself -- unlike this film. Because in my most humble opinion 'Charlie' is the 'Dr Strangelove' of it’s time, and it has managed to take a true-life tale adapted from a novel, and then doused it in charm and satire, before putting it on a plate for everyone to see. 

To start of with I've got to mention that all of the actors who starred in this film are so charismatic to watch, I honestly think they can sell ice-cream to Eskimos during Winter. Tom Hanks has the raw style and grace of a classic Hollywood legend. Julia Roberts is so dazzling I can't help but not stare at her breasts. And as for Philip Seymour Hoffman – Ka-pow! – the trinity is here! As always Philip makes you believe he's the character he is playing, despite sporting the 'Jim Gordon mustache' he's got on. 

Also, as anyone who follows cinema would surly know, I'd say Mike Nichols is one of the most talented directors in the business. Since he's directed classics like 'The Graduate', he has sculpted film after film after film into works of art, and this one is no exception -- amalgamating special-effects, acting, and stock footage, in the only way he knows how. Magnificently and with meaning.


Charlie Wilson's War Starring The Charlies Angels
Charlie Wilson's War Starring Tom Hanks and Philip Seymour Hoffman

Charlie Wilson's War Starring Julia Roberts
Now I'm sure there were a couple of things in this movie that weren't to everybody’s taste. For example, the exposition can be rather extensive at times. The nudity can be slightly off putting for the more frigid members of the movie going public. Plus some of the combat sequences can appear a bit jovial in nature. But apart from that, well... nah!... this is one hell of great film. And these are it's facts. (1) 'Universal' first released this $75 million dollar production on the 21st of December, 2007, and eventually clawed back $119 million dollars at the box office. (2) Loosely translated, this project was entitled 'Power Games' in Portugal, 'Power Plays' in Peru, and 'Power Toys' in Greece. (3) Apart from those scenes shot at 'Downey Studios', situated in Lakewood Boulevard, California, the rest of this movie was shot on location in Marrakech, Morocco; and Hancock Park, Los Angeles. (4) One of the taglines used to promote this picture, was, 'A stiff drink. A little mascara. A lot of nerve. Who said they couldn't bring down the Soviet empire'. (5) It only took Emily Blunt two whole days to shoot her role for this film. (6) Unfortunately an assistant in the special effects department was seriously injured when a mock 'Stinger Missile' exploded in his hands, in preparation for a scene on-board a helicopter. (7) In an issue of 'USA Today', the real Charlie Wilson said that he didn't have any qualms about this film, saying, "Anything I might have objected to was provable". (8) Another real-life fact you might want to know, is that Charlies real-assistants weren't all beautiful ladies, instead, his chief aide was one man named Charlie Schnabel.


Charlie Wilson's War Starring Julia Roberts In A Sexy Bikini


Overall 'Charlie Wilson's War' is great film to watch, and it has given me some hope that Hollywood can still deliver on a film that has the right cast, the right script, the right director, and the right message. Viva la Charlie. Right Tom?




Na! Nuff said.

THE RATING: A