Crime Drama

'Suburbicon' TIFF 2017 Review: There goes the neighborhood

September 7, 2017Ben MK

A story about greed, deceit and wrongdoers getting their comeuppance, Suburbicon finds director George Clooney reteaming with his Ocean's trilogy co-star Matt Damon. This time, however, the pair aren't plotting a heist, even though this 1950s-set noir comedy does involve a fair bit of scheming.

Named for the supposedly idyllic — and, not so coincidentally, all-white — community in which the story takes place, Suburbicon follows the Lodge family, after a home invasion leaves matriarch Rose (Julianne Moore) dead and her mild-mannered advertising executive husband, Gardner (Damon), and twin sister, Margaret, to care for their son, Nicky (Noah Jupe). All is not what it seems, however, and when Nicky unwittingly stumbles upon the real motive for his mother's untimely demise, it puts both him and his family in mortal danger.

Written by Clooney, Grant Heslov and the Coen Brothers, Suburbicon also features a minor subplot concerning the racial intolerance that rears its ugly head when an African American family moves in to the neighborhood. It doesn't prove very consequential, but that's not to say it doesn't add some much-needed dimension to the story.

Suburbicon is receiving its North American premiere as part of TIFF 2017's Special Presentations programme. Its runtime is 1 hr. 45 min.

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