WHAT WE’RE WATCHING WITH WALTER WILLIAMS
Amsterdam – 4.5 ⭐
Considering it cost $55 million to make “Amsterdam” investors must be nervous with the movie floundering at the box office.
Personally I enjoyed every minute of it’s 2 hour 14 minute run time. This is an intelligent movie for people with competence.
Christian Bale as “Burt Berendsen” is an absolute scene stealer with his glass eye routine and narration. And that’s just the beginning of the role call of Hollywood stars who signed on for this project. Add Aussie glamour Margot Robbie as “Valerie Voze” and John David Washington as “Harold Woodman” and you have the nucleus of the cast who’s characters go from the World One battlefields to form an unbreakable bond in “Amsterdam” the city and title of this Comedy, Drama, Historical piece, which is loosely based on a true story as all entertaining ones usually are.
Set in the 1930s, “Amsterdam” sees two of these friends witness a murder and then get framed for it by the killer (Timothy Olyphant as Taron Milfax), and uncover one of the most outrageous and least discussed political conspiracy plots in American history (that part is essentially true). The cast is as epic as the movie, but I don’t want to spoil it for you the cinema goer. Put it this way there is nearly another name star in every new set piece. Normally too many stars spoil the broth, but not in this instance.
This film was inspired by the Business Plot, a 1933 political conspiracy in which wealthy American businessmen and bankers plotted a military coup d’état to overthrow President Franklin D. Roosevelt and replace him with a fascist veterans’ organization headed by U.S. Marine Corps Major General Smedley Butler.
Butler revealed the plot in a testimony under oath to the U.S. House of Representatives’ Special Committee on Un-American Activities in 1934.
The committee concluded that a plot was indeed concocted, but none of the plotters were prosecuted. Money talks.
On paper that sounds boring, but it’s actually highly entertaining and told as an epic tale over a few decades as only writer/director David O. Russell could.
This is his first feature film in 8 years, since “Joy”. This film feels like author John Irving and director Wes Anderson colluded for the very first time.
Watch out for: Taylor Swift in a brief role…there are no small acting roles.
Try to be optimistic and let the love, murder and conspiracy begin.