BBC iPlayer: Michael Clayton (2007)

on Monday, June 07, 2010
[Watch, until 11.54pm Sunday 13th June 2010] (UK users only)

George Clooney in Michael Clayton
Director: Tony Gilroy
Cast: George Clooney, Tilda Swinton, Tom Wilkinson, Sydney Pollack

SYNOPSIS: "Michael Clayton is a high-priced law firm's problem fixer. He is brought in to clean up the mess after one of the firm's top litigators suffers a breakdown while representing a corrupt chemical corporation in a multi-billion dollar legal suit. With the case in jeopardy, Clayton is under pressure to resolve the situation and appease the firm's clients, represented by chief legal counsel Karen Crowder. Having discovered the seriousness of the chemical company's iniquities, Clayton finds himself torn between his desire to do the right thing and a pressing need to pay off spiralling personal debts." (

Coming to a film nominated for seven Oscars can leave expectations unfeasibly high. However, while the non-linear narrative does lead to some sluggish moments, Tony Gilroy's debut feature delivers. The acting here is of particular note, with Clooney, Swinton and Wilkinson all receiving deserved Oscar nominations, and Swinton winning Best Supporting Actress. However, it is the ending that makes 'Michael Clayton' truly stand out, pulling the viewer through the film's moral corruption and delivering a satisfying resolution.

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