Laugh-Out-Loud Comedy

“Hotshots” looks at a movie!

Burn After Reading - Movie PosterBURN AFTER READING is the Coen brothers’ first movie since their award- winning success with the 2007 NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN, and they could easily win an Academy Award two years in a row, first with a drama and then with a comedy.

And don’t be surprised if Brad Pitt wins the Oscar for Best Supporting Actor for his role as Chad Feldheimer, a trainer in a gym whose attempt to take advantage of an opportunity doesn’t go as well as he had hoped, to say the least.

If most of the characters in this film talk smart and act stupid, then you would have to say that Pitt’s character, Chad, talks the smartest.

The story begins when Osborne Cox, a CIA analyst played by John Malkovich, quits the agency. However, as someone says later about Washington, DC, “Most of the people in this town who quit are fired.”

Ozzie is told he has a drinking problem, which of course he denies, but he will investigate a suspicious noise in his house with a drink in his hand.

Ozzie tells his wife, Katie, played by Tilda Swinton, that he has been thinking about writing a book, “or a sort of memoir,” and he does. But then a computer disc of his tell-all “memoir” accidentally gets lost at a local Hardbodies gym, and the rest, as they say, is laugh-out-loud comedy.

Chad and his partner in attempted crime, Linda, played by Frances McDormand, believe that the disc contains incriminating secrets that someone should be willing to pay $50,000 for. Linda is also a trainer at the gym, she wants the money for plastic surgery on four areas of her body, and she is actually the “brains” of the outfit.

Linda tells Chad, “This is our opportunity. You don’t get many of these.”

Meanwhile, George Clooney plays Harry, a federal marshal who gets involved with everybody, but not how you would expect. Although happily married, he is having an affair with Ozzie’s wife, Katie, meets Linda through an Internet dating service, and panics when he believes he has killed a government agent.

In other words, everybody is connected to everybody else, everybody seems to have someone watching them and following them, and everybody is funny in some way.

BURN AFTER READING made me laugh from the opening to the closing logo.

I’m Dan Culberson and this is “Hotshots.”