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MISS SLOANE

SYNOPSIS: In the high-stakes world of political power-brokers, Elizabeth Sloane (Jessica Chastain) is the most sought after and formidable lobbyist in D.C. But when taking on the most powerful opponent of her career, she finds winning may come at too high a price.

Review by Louise Keller:
Dialogue heavy but astute in its observations of the world of political lobbying, Miss Sloane is a formidable platform for the talents of Jessica Chastain, whose Elizabeth Sloane pops pills, pays for sex and does whatever it takes to win. With the red-hot topic of gun control as the central theme; she is the predator waiting to pounce for the kill. It's a mesmerizing performance and Chastain uses power dressing, a sculptured mask of make up and curtain of titan hair to embody the essence of the cutthroat lobbyist with a questionable moral compass. Her trump card is concealed up her designer sleeve.

While you may not like the characters or the callous environment in which they reside, director John Madden tackles the material from first time screenwriter Jonathan Perera head-on. Perera has penned a tightly woven screenplay; this is a tense reality in which verbal sparring is an art form and plot surprises ricochet from every direction.

Lobbying is foresight, says Miss Sloane at the beginning of the film, explaining that the element of surprise is key. During the following two hours, we come to understand the nature of this morally bankrupt profession, where legalities are simply hurdles to overcome, people are commodities to be sacrificed and winning is everything.

There are many fascinating facets, including the potent plot strand involving Gugu Mbatha-Raw's Esme Manucharian, an Afro American survivor of a high profile school shooting incident. Ironically, it is Forde (Jake Lacy is terrific), the sex-for hire escort who is the only character with integrity. The scenes between Lacy and Chastain surprise - these are the gritty moments when glimpses of vulnerability appear.

There are rewards, but concentration is required. The film is provocative and often outrageous with Chastain's superb central performance as its key calling card.

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CRITICAL COUNT
Favourable: 1
Unfavourable: 0
Mixed: 0

MISS SLOANE (M)
(France, US, 2016)

CAST: Jessica Chastain, Mark Strong, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, John Lithgow, Jake Lacy

PRODUCER: Ben Browning, Kris Thykier, Ariel Zeitoun

DIRECTOR: John Madden

SCRIPT: Jonathan Perera

CINEMATOGRAPHER: Sebastian Blenkov

EDITOR: Alexander Berner

MUSIC: Max Richter

PRODUCTION DESIGN: Matthew Davies

RUNNING TIME: 132 minutes

AUSTRALIAN DISTRIBUTOR: Roadshow

AUSTRALIAN RELEASE: March 2, 2017







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