Adam McKay
Christian Bale, Amy Adams, Steve Carell
"The Power Behind the Throne: `Vice` Shines a Light on the Shadows of Politics"

Posted Thursday, Nov 30, 2023 113

Adam McKay`s 2018 film `Vice` delves into the life and career of former Vice President Dick Cheney. The movie spans decades, chronicling Cheney`s rise to power from his early days as a Washington insider to becoming one of the most influential figures in American politics. Anchored by a remarkable performance by Christian Bale, the film captures Cheney`s political cunning, unyielding ambition, and the controversial decisions that shaped not only his own legacy but also the course of America.

`Vice` explores themes of personal ambition, abuse of power, and the consequences of unchecked authority. Its tone is a mix of satire, dark humor, and political critique, offering an unflinching look at the inner workings of Washington, D.C. and the relationship between political figures and the American people.

Christian Bale`s transformative performance as Dick Cheney is a tour de force, capturing not only Cheney`s physicality but also his mannerisms and calculated charm. The ensemble cast, including Amy Adams as Cheney`s wife Lynne, provides strong support, adding depth and nuance to the characters that inhabit Cheney`s world.

Adam McKay`s direction injects a frenetic energy and unconventional storytelling techniques into the narrative. Employing a mix of dark comedy, satire, and creative interludes, McKay portrays Cheney`s ascent to power with a critical eye and an irreverent spirit.

Vice movie review

The score by Nicholas Britell resonates with intensity, at times mirroring Cheney`s single-minded drive and at others exposing the underlying tension in his political maneuverings, enhancing the film`s thematic impact.

Cinematographer Greig Fraser showcases a visual style that is both dynamic and thought-provoking, utilizing a mix of handheld camerawork and carefully composed shots to evoke both intimacy and grandeur as the story unfolds.

The meticulous production design captures the various time periods and political environments, providing a compelling backdrop that underscores the film`s political narrative and adds authenticity to the settings.

The special effects in `Vice` are seamless and subtle, enhancing the film`s overall visual quality without overpowering the storytelling. Despite the absence of overt spectacle, the effects contribute to creating a sense of realism within the film`s political context.

Vice movie review

The editing in `Vice` is sharp and precise, skillfully weaving together the non-linear narrative and incorporating supporting footage to provide context and commentary, enhancing the film`s satirical elements.

The film`s pacing is deliberate, allowing for quieter character moments as well as intense political sequences. The measured tempo ensures that viewers not only grasp the narrative details but also have time to contemplate the moral implications that unfold.

The dialogue in `Vice` is a mix of witty exchanges, political jargon, and biting commentary, capturing the essence of political discourse and adding depth to the characters` motivations and ideologies.

Critics may argue that the film`s unapologetic bias and unconventional storytelling techniques could alienate some viewers. Additionally, the portrayal of certain political events and characters might be subject to contestation.

As a film critic, `Vice` stands as a daring and provocative examination of political power and its consequences. Through a blend of remarkable performances, audacious storytelling, and biting satire, the film offers a thought-provoking exploration of the complex figure that is Dick Cheney and invites audiences to evaluate the costs of unchecked authority.