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When Clive Met Julia

My review of Duplicity, the espionage-romance-comedy starring Clive Owen and--in her first lead role since 2003--Julia Roberts, will be up tomorrow morning. (Preview: Fairly disappointing.) In the meantime, I've had them drag from the archives my column on Clive and Julia (and Jude and Natalie)'s previous collaboration, the Mike Nichols film Closer. The gist:

Closer is not a bad movie--or rather it is not merely bad. It's flamboyantly bad, bad in a way that can't help but be fascinating and even entertaining. It's well-enough executed, boasting a couple of good performances and one great one, and it's pleasant to look at. But it's also aggressively, irretrievably silly, a potty-mouthed fantasy that somehow mistakes itself for a fearless excavation of the dark recesses of the human soul, American Pie as reimagined by Neil LaBute. 

Anyone curious can read the whole thing here.

--Christopher Orr