Rated NR · 106 minutes · 2009

This is one of the smartest films about the Iraq War that’s been made. I guess that’s not saying much, but In the Loop is a superbly aimed and razor-sharp comedy about the people who make wars. Starting with some poorly chosen words by a British member of parliament (Tom Hollander) and leading to a two-day confrontation/propaganda party/sex romp in Washington D.C., Armando Iannucci’s film doesn’t focus on soldiers; instead, it looks at the politicians who scheme to start the shooting. This is wise, since criminality involves intent, and if you’re going to find intent for war, it’s not going to be found in ordinary soldiers, but in the lying patriots who run our countries. Iannucci cut his teeth writing for the best comedies in Britain, including Knowing Me Knowing You With Alan Partridge, which is perhaps the funniest thing ever made by humans or Englishmen. In the Loop is just as good, and this time, Iannucci is putting his skills into the service of a cause that needs smart people. God knows the American film “stars” who’ve tried to talk this stuff up between collagen injections don’t do the cause any favors.

See our full review: War Machine

War Machine

'In the Loop' hilariously takes aim at chicken-hawk politicians »

Director: Armando Iannucci
Producer: Paula Jalfon, Kevin Loader, Adam Tandy and David M. Thompson
Cast: Peter Capaldi, Tom Hollander, Gina McKee, James Gandolfini, Chris Addison, Anna Chlumsky, Paul Higgins, Mimi Kennedy, Steve Coogan, Enzo Cilenti, Christian Contreras, Olivia Poulet, David Rasche and Joanna Scanlan


In the Loop


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Charleston City Paper This year gave us a host of great films — one even had zombies In many areas, 2009 sucked profoundly — bad economy, bickering health-scare debate, the Yankees winning the World Series again. But at the movies, things were much better. In some years, the last couple of films on my top 10 list just fill out space; in 2009, I agonized over terrific films that didn't quite make the cut. If you're looking for entertainment or dramatic tension over the next few months, your Netflix queue could be an embarrassment of riches. by Scott Renshaw 12/30/2009

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