#REVIEW: “MISS SLOANE”
Lobbyist Elizabeth Sloane (Jessica Chastain) simply doesn’t know how to lose, being known in the political world well for her ruthless approach to winning. When called upon to lead the charge in the persuasion of female voters to be pro-fire arms, she refuses. Rodolfo Schmidt (Mark Strong), head of a competing agency recruits her and soon she finds herself up against her former allies and their client Bob Sanford (Chuck Shamata) as a powerful figure in the fight for controlled fire arms regulation. Met with her greatest challenge yet, Elizabeth places her reputation and everything she has fought so hard to build, on the line when the fight gets personal.
Directed by John Madden (The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, Shakespeare in Love) and filmed in Toronto just a few months back, Miss Sloane, pardon the pun, arrives faster than a speeding bullet. The gun-control Drama, while being verbose and process-driven, starts off looking at the greater issue at hand, before zooming-in on what ultimately is a battle between our flawed heroine and a broken machine.
Lies, secrecy and deception have never looked so good and Chastain delivers perhaps her greatest performance yet, all-in and navigating the challenge of some wordy dialogue by Jonathan Perera, remaining commanding at every turn. She is sharp, unpredictable and incredibly-focused. Just when you think she already is at full throttle, she manages always to find another gear. Strong is the calm to her storm, and along with him we get a lot more than we bargained for from Elizabeth. John Lithgow is relentlessly unforgiving as Congressman Ron Sperling, tasked with annihilating her, forcing Chastain to come with her game face on. Jake Lacy as Forde is memorable in an unexpected twist to the plot.
Miss Sloane‘s release couldn’t be timelier with gun control at the forefront of the social conscience and recent changes in the American political landscape. While it isn’t so much a statement piece on fire arms as thought originally, it is just as adept as a suspenseful, smartly-conceptualized piece on the examination of stakeholders in the debate and also the high costs involved in winning the fight. The Film instead of taking the obvious route honing-in on the perils of fire arm abuse and its victims, does raise some thought-provoking questions about the process of acquiring fire arms. Maybe in some instances it is justifiable in the face of the Constitution’s Second Amendment granting Americans the right to keep and bear arms.
Chastain’s performance is a standout in a year filled with some superb performances from her A-List peers.
VVS Films release MISS SLOANE Friday, December 9, 2016.