Friday, September 25, 2009

Thursday Night at the Movies - The Imformant!

This movie is based on a true story about how the food conglomerate ADM was brought down for price fixing. The on-screen message, even before the credits, is that the movie makers took some liberties with the story, so it's hard to say how "true" the movie is.Matt Damon plays Mark "Corky" Whitacre, a biochemist who helped design the plant which makes an amino acid called lysine. He starts moving up the corporate ladder and finds that AMD is conspiring to fix prices with other lysine manufactures around the world. He goes to the FBI and tells them the story and agrees to help them gather evidence.

The trailers for the film make it look almost like a light-hearted farce as Whitacre talks into his lapel (he's been wired by the FBI) to narrate his day and can't keep himself from looking for the hidden cameras that the FBI has installed in hotel meeting rooms.

But the last third or so of the movie takes a darker turn as it becomes clear that Mark Whitacre is not whom he seems to be. I can't reveal any more without giving up too many plot points. It's kind of a weird movie to classify. Definitely not a date movie, and kids will be bored to tears, but I liked it. My wife didn't really although she was fascinated by the Matt Damon character. Damon is very good in this. One gimmick they use very well involves a voice over of Whitacre's conversation with himself in his head. He makes all sorts of astonishing statements, which often had nothing to do with what is actually happening.

And if you do see it, try to spot the cameo appearances of both the Smothers Brothers.

1 comment:

Duane said...

holy smokes I didn't realize this movie was about the ADM price fixing. I've wanted to go see it, now I have to see it. I followed the ADM price fixing way back when it written about by an Ag writer named Alan Guebert. As a farmer, I can say I am no fan of ADM, price fixer to the world.....thanks for the writeup. Oh good luck in your'll be back everyone comes back!