Hollywood masterminds Joel and Ethan Coen are back for another brilliant and original tale in Hail, Caesar!. The film chronicles the madness that follows studio fixer Eddie Mannix (Josh Brolin), as he tries to find an over-the-top movie star (George Clooney) who disappears from the set of the studio’s biggest tentpole, and now threatens completion of their big event movie.
Here are five reasons why you should definitely line up to watch Hail, Caesar!:
5. The talented tap-dancing of Burt Gurney
Channelling his inner Gene Kelly, Channing Tatum is perfectly cast as tap-dancing whizz and studio A-lister Burt Gurney, who enchants audiences with a rhythmic and choreographic musical number of epic proportions. While audiences have long known that Tatum can definitely shake it, he steps it up a notch as the whimsical Gurney, who may not be quite all he appears to be.
4. The Golden Age of Hollywood
Set during the Hollywood’s golden age of the mid-1950s when big blockbusters ruled the silver screen, Hail, Caesar! utilises a unique setting to tell a compelling and completely hysterical day-in-the-life story. Set amongst the dramas surrounding uber studio Capital Pictures, the film follows both the actors and the studio heads who order them through a range of chaotic situations that threaten to derail the mega project aptly named Hail, Caesar. The Coen’s have a lot of fun with the period detail, while playing around with the history of gossip columns and the deal making that shaped Hollywood.
3. Scarlet Johansson – The impossible starlet
While Eddie Mannix’s day mostly concerns finding missing movie star Baird Whitlock (George Clooney), after he goes missing from the set of Hail, Caesar!, he also finds himself trying to rescue pregnant and unwed starlet DeeAnna Moran from a possible scandal. Making quite the entrance in an epic synchronised swimming scene, Johansson impresses with a thick New Jersey accent and tough demeanor that shatters all illusions we have of the perfect Hollywood starlet. The banter she shares with Brolin’s Mannix is fun to watch, as the two appear to be the only two realists in the crazy world of Hollywood.
2. Eddie Mannix – The no-nonsense studio exec
Cast in the central role of studio ‘fixer’ Eddie Mannix is Coen regular Josh Brolin, who once again makes a big impression on audiences as a no-nonsense but deeply troubled individual. Brolin is both deeply serious and unintentionally hilarious as Mannix, who has a ritualised habit of attending confession in between juggling multiple tasks. While it would be easy to make Mannix a corporate suit and villain, he’s immensely likeable as the only sensible and switched on individual in all of Tinseltown, and you can’t help but respect his commitment to his job and clients.
1. ‘Twer that it were so simple’
But Hail, Caesar’s defining moment comes in a showdown between cowboy musician Hoby Doyle (Alden Ehrenreich) and cultured director Laurence Laurentiz (Ralph Fiennes), on the set of Laurentiz’s new movie. The interaction between these two results in an absolute laughfest, owing mostly to a clash of culture and filmmaking styles. Well worth the watch.
Image source: Paramount Pictures.