STATE OF PLAY Add To My Top 10

Edge of Your Seat Thrills

Content -2
Quality
None Light Moderate Heavy
Language        
Violence        
Sex        
Nudity        

Release Date: April 17, 2009

Starring: Russell Crowe, Ben Affleck, Rachel McAdams, Helen Mirren, Robin Wright Penn, Jason Bateman, Jeff Daniels, and Michael Berresse

Genre: Political Thriller

Audience: Teenagers and adults

Rating: PG-13

Runtime: 127 minutes

Address Comments To:

Jeffrey R. Immelt, Chairman/CEO, General Electric
Jeff Zucker, President/CEO, NBC Universal
Ron Meyer, President/COO, Universal Studios
Marc Shmuger, Chairman
David Linde, Co-Chairman
Universal Pictures
100 Universal City Plaza
Universal City, CA 91608-1085
Phone: (818) 777-1000
Web Page: www.universalstudios.com

Content:

(H, B, C, Pa, LL, VV, S, A, DD, MM) Light humanist worldview with no mention of God where journalist protagonist searches for truth about murder and political corruption but mostly for his own career and where characters face some moral dilemmas; eight obscenities and four profanities, with mention by character not to take the Lord’s name in vain but that’s said by a corrupt politician; strong violence with some blood when three characters are shot onscreen; light sexual references includes discussion of past adultery, but not in a salacious, very crude way; no nudity; drinking of beer and whiskey; no smoking, minor character is on drugs; and, strong miscellaneous immorality includes adultery, corruption and withholding evidence from police.

Summary:

STATE OF PLAY is the story of two newspaper journalists who uncover a political conspiracy and risk their lives to get to the bottom of it. This topnotch thriller contains brief foul language and brief violence, so some caution is required, especially for pre-teens.

Review:

STATE OF PLAY is a topnotch thriller that revolves around two journalists who uncover a political conspiracy and risk their lives to get to the bottom of it.

Cal McAffrey, an old-school print journalist played by Russell Crowe, begins to investigate a double homicide. Teaming with female blogger Dell Frye (played by Rachel McAdams), the two begin an uneasy relationship as they discover that the homicides may be linked to a political scandal that’s brewing involving McAffrey’s college roommate, who is now a Congressman (played by Ben Affleck).

As they piece together the plot, the entanglement of McAffrey’s friendship with the Congressman mixes with concerns about a paramilitary government contractor and a mysterious rogue special forces operative, until the final moments of the movie, when more layers of an espionage plot are revealed.

STATE OF PLAY moves along familiar ground of conspiracy theories but delivers a number of “red herrings” and plot twists to keep viewers guessing. Russell Crowe as McAffrey and Rachel McAdams as Frye have a great chemistry together and deliver great performances. The story, however, is the star as the plot unravels, revealing all the connections of the political intrigue. The filmmakers have woven a very satisfying thriller, though they could have paid more attention to the personal emotional stories they tell. The music is very well done and unique as are all the other production values.

STATE OF PLAY has some minor foul language and the plot does revolve around adultery, but adulterous actions are only discussed since it happened in the past. There is also some violence with some blood when three characters are shot onscreen.

STATE OF PLAY delivers a fun ride of a thriller, but MOVIEGUIDE® advises caution, especially for pre-teens.

In Brief:

STATE OF PLAY is a thriller about two journalists who uncover a political conspiracy and risk their lives to get to the bottom of it. Russell Crowe plays McAffrey, a hard-nosed print journalist who begins to investigate a double homicide. Teaming with a female blogger named Frye, they discover that the homicides may be linked to a political scandal that’s brewing involving McAffrey’s college roommate, who is now a Congressman. As they piece together a conspiracy plot, the story of McAffrey’s friendship with the Congressman mixes with concerns about a paramilitary government contractor and a mysterious rogue special forces operative until the movie’s final moments.

Russell Crowe as McAffrey and Rachel McAdams as Frye have a great chemistry together. The story is the movie’s real star, however. The filmmakers have woven a very satisfying thriller, though they could have paid more attention to the personal emotional stories they tell. The movie contains brief foul language but no sex scenes. It also has brief violence with some blood when three characters are shot onscreen. STATE OF PLAY delivers a fun ride of a thriller, but MOVIEGUIDE® advises caution, especially for pre-teens.