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Stewart Smith

The Ides of March

Who is it in the press that calls on me?
I hear a tongue shriller than all the music
Cry “Caesar!” Speak, Caesar is turn’d to hear.
Beware the ides of March.

What man is that?

A soothsayer bids you beware the ides of March.

Julius Caesar, William Shakespeare

“The Ides of March” is the fifteenth of March, or approximately the middle of March. It is also famous because it is the day that Julius Caesar was assassinated. The scene above referred to a seer that warned Caesar of danger. So, a bit of a history lesson there behind the new political thriller The Ides of March — starring George Clooney, who also directed the movie and co-wrote the screenplay.

The Ides of March follows the theme of “the darker side of politics”, and tells the story of a young idealistic staffer Stephen Meyers (Ryan Gosling) working for Governor and presidential candidate Mike Morris (George Clooney) on the primary campaign trail. All is going well until Meyers gets a call asking him to go work for the other side.

Soon enough, Meyers makes a mistake that provokes a chain reaction leaving him scrambling to keep his job, sending him kicking and screaming, down a spiral of self-destruction.

I think that the movie reflects the idea of political secrets that are being kept from us. It seems to be a popular theme nowadays. The assumption that those in the higher classes live richer, easier lives is one that has been followed for centuries. This movie throws us into a world of bribery and cheating and lies. I pray that politics isn’t really as described in this movie.

I really enjoyed this movie. It is a good political thriller full of twists and turns. There are about five plot twists, all of them sudden and shocking. It has an Inception-style ending which, although a little annoying, is good overall because it puts the story into the hands of the audience.

Age Recommendation: 13+   I think it’s up to parents to know their kids. There is some strong language, mild sex, a suicide and references to an abortion. Plus it’s kind of complex and can be hard for younger kids to understand.

Final Verdict: 8/10. I like the subtlety.

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