I occasionally mention movies on my blog, but only rarely does one impress me to such a degree that I devote a blog entry to it for its own sake. The movie The Good German, starring George Clooney and Cate Blanchette, is such a movie. Filmed in black and white, it is not merely an imitation of the great classic films, it actually does what many have tried to accomplish and failed. This is a genuinely new film that nevertheless manages to incorporate all the things that made the classics by Hitchcock, the enthralling films starring Humphrey Bogart, great in the first place. The story has all the intrigue, suspense and troubled romance one could hope for in a plot – mysterious and suspenseful without losing the viewer in excess detail. It is set in post-WWII Berlin, and Cate Blanchette is in superb form as the main character, a German with a complex and troubled past who wants to get out of the city. The movie includes scenes that have more of an edge to them than would have been acceptable in the old classics, but that is to be expected – there is one example of this that seems gratuitous, but for the most part, the film is far more subtle in many instances than has become the norm in recent films.
Topping it all off is a score by Thomas Newman that captures the mood perfectly, as did the classic film scores of Korngold, Waxman, Herrmann and others. Highly recommended!