6.5

Leatherheads

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Leatherheads

Release Date: Sept. 23
Director: George Clooney
Writers: Duncan Brantley, Rick Reilly
Producers: Grant Heslov, Casey Silver
Starring: George Clooney, Renée Zellweger, John Krasinski?
Studio/Run Time: Universal Studios Home Entertainment, 114 mins.

Silly comedy about football's beginnings kinda swell, thanks to Clooney

Say, George Clooney's got a lotta moxie, giving us this slapsticky movie about an aging football player's hail-mary attempt to save his rag-tag 1925 team and bring fame and fans to the fledgling professional sport. He's the cat's pajamas as Jimmy "Dodge" Connolly, all rumpled and dapper in his newsboy cap, three-piece suit and soft smirks. It's hard to understand how Renée Zellweger—as Lexie Littleton, the hard-boiled dame reporter who's "got great legs"—can resist his whiskey-soaked charms for so much of this lighthearted film, instead taking a shine to too-good-to-be-true war hero and football star Carter Rutherford (The Office's John Krasinski). The movie's got a nifty look and feel—Randy Newman's ragtime piano and speakeasy scenes could just as easily be sepia-toned—but it could've done without the Keystone Cops routine. Some of the characters seem half-baked, their conflicts rushed and too easily resolved, and what is presented as a possible script twist never pans out. Thanks to ol' Georgie boy, though, we can forgive the film's faulty construct—because it's fun to watch and he, of course, is the bee's knees.


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