Cinema Junkie by Beth Accomando
Wednesday, April 23, 2008
Julia Roberts and Tom Hanks in Charlie Wilson's War (Universal)
All right, I have to apologize for losing this film in the holiday shuffle at the end of last year. Despite its big name celebrity stars (Tom Hanks and Julia Roberts), Charlie Wilson's War (coming out on DVD April 22) was no surefire box office draw. It probably could have used all the help it could have gotten to inspire people to overcome their fear of films about recent history and politics, and about the unsexy subject matter of Afghanistan. But with Mike Nichols at the helm, Aaron Sorkin adapting from George Crile's non-fiction book, and a disheveled Philip Seymour Hoffman as a boozing CIA agent, Charlie Wilson's War has a lot going for it.
It probably says something about both the state of our politics and our filmmaking that Charlie Wilson's War was up for best comedy and not best drama at the Golden Globes back in January. One filmmaker I spoke with recently said that he feels the current administration is writing comedy every time they open their mouths or hold a press conference so maybe the comic absurdity of Charlie Wilson's War is extremely apt and its place in the comedy category all the more fitting.