Thursday, 21 March 2019
THREE years after helming the Oscar- and BAFTA-winning comedy drama The Big Short, writer-director Adam McKay’s follow-up,Vice, tells the story of Dick Cheney who, when he served under George W Bush between 2001 and 2009, helped shape the world as we now know it.
How such a superficially uncharismatic vice-president became arguably the most powerful man in the world without anyone raising so much as an eyebrow is ripe for exploration, and McKay — helped by a cast that includes Christian Bale, Amy Adams, Steve Carell and Sam Rockwell — is certainly the right man for the job.
With The Big Short, McKay combined the genius for satirical comedy he had previously displayed in films like Anchorman, Talladega Nights and The Other Guys with poignant personal drama and astute social observation.
The success of this approach resulted in five Oscar nominations, including best picture and best director, and a win for best adapted screenplay shared by McKay and his
co-writer Charles Randolph
Vice looks set to follow this winning formula, not least because McKay has again penned the screenplay, and it boasts a similarly A-list cast.
Heading the impressive line-up is Oscar-winner Christian Bale (The Fighter), who has undergone another dramatic physical transformation, this time shaving his head and piling on the weight to take the role of Cheney.
Joining him is his American Hustle co-star, Amy Adams, herself a five-time Oscar nominee, who takes on the role of Cheney’s wife Lynne.
The Big Short star Steve Carell, who has described Vice as a “kindred spirit” to that film, is on board as secretary of defence Donald Rumsfeld, while Sam Rockwell — who last year won the best supporting actor Oscar for his turn in Martin McDonagh’s Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri — takes the role of George W Bush himself.
They are joined by Lily Rabe and Alison Pill as Cheney’s daughters Liz and Mary respectively; Eddie Marsan as World Bank president Paul Wolfowitz; and Tyler Perry as secretary of state Colin Powell.
“The reactions I’ve seen from audiences to Vice are endlessly fascinating,” Adam McKay told The Daily Beast. “There’s a need to redefine that era, and a need to have a certain perspective on it that’s safe and comfortable. The whole movie is about power and the effects of power, more so than anything I’ve done at this point. It’s clearly the story of our times.”
• Vice is showing at the Regal Picturehouse cinema in Henley from today (Friday).
28 January 2019
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