Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Movie Review: “Capote”

I saw “Capote” over Thanksgiving weekend and I give it four bells out of four.

I wasn’t sure what to expect. I didn’t know much about him and wasn’t sure what the angle would be: would it delve into the crime that prompted his book, “In Cold Blood,” or would it focus on a flamboyant and eccentric character? It was neither.

“Capote” is a fascinating study of Truman himself and gets into the psychology of why, and how, he wrote the first true-crime novel. Philip Seymour Hoffman plays the lead and is outstanding. I’ll never be able to look at him again and think of anything but Truman (just like I can’t look at Ralph Fiennes and think of anything but Nazi). The film adeptly draws you into Truman’s personality and leaves you wondering throughout whether he really cares about the crime’s victims and the perpetrators, or is he just there for the story. Along the way, there are some nice surprises about his social circle (including the fact that he was a childhood friend of Harper Lee, of “To Kill A Mockingbird” fame). Other than a flashback to the crime that prompted the book, the movie was pretty tame.

I think we have a “Best Actor” nominee here, so see it if you can. It’s a good one.

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