The Interpreter

2005

Action / Crime / Mystery / Thriller

69
Rotten Tomatoes Critics - Rotten 57%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Spilled 54%
IMDb Rating 6.4 10 95542

Synopsis


Uploaded By: OTTO
August 16, 2011 at 11:07 PM

Director

Cast

Nicole Kidman as Silvia Broome
Sean Penn as Tobin Keller
Catherine Keener as Dot Woods
Jesper Christensen as Nils Lud
720p.BLU
599.43 MB
1280*720
English 2.0
PG-13
23.976 fps
2 hr 8 min
P/S 5 / 36

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by EThompsonUMD 9 / 10

Humanistic, language-loving political thriller

For some time I avoided "The Interpreter," [2005] which sadly was to be the final film directed by recently deceased Sydney Pollack. It received lukewarm reviews in the mass media (although Ebert liked it) and generally unappreciative commentary on IMDb. My avoidance turned out to be a mistake. I have since viewed the film several times on video and have admired it more with each viewing. Yes, the pacing is unusually slow for a political thriller. Yes, the relationship between the leads has a weird chemistry and does not end with the usual Hollywood romantic closure/cliché. Yes, the script is talky, very talky even. And, yes, the plot is hard to follow and has some large plausibility holes, particularly in the film's final sequence.

As it happens, though, only the last of these is truly a "weakness," and then mainly to those unfortunately literal-minded film viewers whose aesthetic pleasures are utterly ruined by "logical" inconsistencies in plot construction or resolution. Would the Secret Service, FBI, and U.N. security staff really leave a nearly assassinated leader of a foreign state unattended in a "safe room" immediately after the event? Certainly not, one hopes. But stranger things have "really" happened in the panic following actual assassinations in 20th century American history. Were that not so, the conspiracy theorists would have much less grist for their mills. Regardless, the flaw in logic just doesn't matter much, for the entire plot to assassinate President Zuwani, the dictatorial and ruthless head of Matobo, a fictional African state, is not only a "con" as one of the FBI officials gathers early on in the investigation, it is also a perfect example of a Hitchcockian Maguffin.

Unlike more intellectually simplistic political thrillers, including Pollack's own genre classic "Three Days of the Condor," "The Interpreter" isn't ultimately about the surface subject of its main plot. The plan to assassinate Zuwanie while he delivers a self-exculpatory speech at the U.N. – i.e. what Silvia Broome hears, or claims to have heard, whispered in Ku on a darkened General Assembly floor – is as much what "The Interpreter" is about as "Psycho" is about the theft of $40,000 or "Casablanca" is about the missing letters of transit signed (with ridiculous implausibility) by General De Gaulle.

What "The Interpreter" is about instead is a rich complex of issues that surround and emerge from the working out of its convoluted plot. Very interestingly, it is about the politics of revolution and betrayal in contemporary Africa (taking its main cue from the horrors in Zimbabwe). It is also about the importance of language and communication in a world where children are armed with AK-47s. The film explores the linguistic workings of the U.N. in loving detail and even takes the time to invent and employ a made-up language (the aforementioned "Ku," which Silvia Broome interprets along with uninvented and un-subtitled French). A key witness in the investigation speaks only Portuguese. Moreover the film's climax, comes not with the expected death of Zuwanie but with his having to read - and choke on - the powerful and inspirational words he wrote before he became like the monsters he beheld. In the next to last scene we hear Silvia's voice-over naming Zuwanie's victims as recorded in detail in her dead brother's notebooks, thereby illustrating another unique power of language: bearing historical witness to atrocity. Most of all, "The Interpreter" is about two characters, Nicole Kidman as U.N. interpreter and Matoban ex-patriot Silvia Broome and Sean Penn as Secret Service agent Tobin Keller, wounded by violence done to loved ones and helping each other resist the desire to subject others or themselves to further violence, "a lazy form of grief" as it is defined in one of the film's many memorable phrases.

Supported by the wonderful Catherine Keener as Keller's torch-carrying partner and Pollack himself as the chief of the Secret Service, Kidman and Penn, two of the finest actors of their generation, offer up their usual first-rate performances here, carrying off five scenes of extended dialog wherein they explore each other's hidden facets and discuss such unlikely but arresting topics as the Ku form of justice and whether wanting someone "gone" is or is not the verbal equivalent of wanting him or her "dead." Personally, I'll take such interruptions in the flow of action over the requisite car chase and explosion scenes any day – although the film does have its own interesting versions of the latter as well. All in all, "The Interpreter" is a film that has been seriously underrated and deserves a look from those who appreciate textured screen writing and subtle acting and who, like me, may have been put off by the film's original reception.

Reviewed by eric262003 9 / 10

A Great Send-Off In Sydney Pollack's Last Directed Film

In his last few outings before his death in 2008, Sydney Pollack has made an abundance of average films. In 2005, three years before his death, Pollack closes up his directing career with a gripping suspenseful eye-opener of movie titled "The Interpreter". The movie itself is saturated with scintillating performances, the characters are sublime and the never once does the viewer's intelligence never gets insulted. The story has a feeling like a modern-day Alfred Hitchcock feeling to it as the suspense will likely keep you intrigued. This is the swan song in Pollack's final directorial project that couldn't have come at a better time.

The story kicks off as United Nations African interpreter Silvia Broome (Nicole Kidman) was gathering personal apparatuses when she overhears a plot to have her country's president assassinated in which involves a visit from an African dignitary. Fearing her life is in danger, Silvia calls up F.B.I. Secret Service Agent Tobin Keller (Sean Penn), who has immediate suspicions about her, but softens up to her knowing there's more to the story than what she's telling him. Fearing her life is in peril, while not telling Keller all the details, Silvia is now in whirlpool of trouble as the dignitary is coming to her neck of the woods in a matter of days.

Though aging and not in the best of health at the time, we wondered if Pollack still had in him. The man brought us "Out of Africa" has made come back to the thriller genre which stapled his career to exceptional fame with films like "Three Days of the Condor" and "The Firm". As the years gone by, Pollack's directed has fizzled with mindless drivel like "Random Hearts". But not here in "The Interpreter", he sails away nicely with an exciting thriller that will likely keep you on your toes.

In the world of movies where the young is dominant, this 71-year old utilizes his dedication and his audiences respect and his clever pacing while refraining from spoon-feeding every detail that comes onto screen. This is a great way to show that for a thriller it's neither mindless drivel or a half-baked effort even if it won't garner any Oscars. Even though the thrills are the key component to this film, "The Interpreter" has a well developed characters that sort of grow onto you as the film progresses. Pollack has good timing when it comes down to boiling points as to when the plot thickens and the suspense level gets more under your skin. This results in the performers to actually get a better enhancement on the characters they're portraying making them all the more crowd pleasing rather than predictable and one-dimensional. This is truly one of Pollack's best directing projects in a long time where suspense, pathos, and perpetual unsettling the whole way through.

The most important scenes that deserves the utmost attention comes from the scenes emanating from the bus. Without giving away spoilers, the ingredients to an outstanding thriller we have an interpreter who heard too much, distressed politicians, overwhelmed F.B.I. agents, and top that all off with explosives in a tight moving surface. These set pieces are what makes this movie all the more special. This scene alone is worth the price of admission.

As Silvia, Kidman has proved she's one of the best performers in the industry today, even in non-Oscar caliber films. Her vast versatility speaks volumes with her movie-star hair even down to the African accent, we get lost in her role she plays as we question what allegiance she truly represents and we begin to trivialize whether her innocence is coincidental or if there's more than meets the eye. Kidman keeps the mysterious level in her character throughout and never lets it go and continually gives Penn's character more in doubt of what she really stands out for. Penn has a more difficult job at hand and his expressions speak louder than what it seems. This gives Penn more of a good excuse to get more inquisitive with Silvia and to find newer hooks to further enhance his character's drive. With the assistance of a wonderful script by Martin Stellman and Brian Ward, Penn and Kidman could still turn an average film into something provocative and through the direction of Pollack, this mediocre thriller has enough spark to keep the thriller aficionado enlightened but never insulted.

With the remarkable cinematography under Darius Khondji, "The Interpreter" is pure eye candy along with all the other parts of the anatomy that will have you tingling with excitement. It's nice to see Pollack back in his thrilling force. Though in the last years in life he did production, this movie was truly his last moment to shine and couldn't have come at a better time. A big salute to a career for the director Sydney Pollack.

Reviewed by Python Hyena 9 / 10

Interpreting Kidman as a Hottie.

The Interpreter (2005): Dir: Sydney Pollack / Cast: Nicole Kidman, Sean Penn, Catherine Keener, Earl Cameron, Jesper Christensen: Tense and provocative thriller about translation and connection. Nicole Kidman plays an interpreter who was raised in Africa and she overhears an assassination plan. Sean Penn plays an investigator assigned to dissect claim or truth of her accusations. Great setup is very detailed and doesn't give in to conventions until dealing with a hinted innuendo. Directed by Sydney Pollack who makes details uncertain. He can expand any genre with films such as Tootsie and Absent of Malice. Kidman holds strong and takes viewers into the details of her job. She is skilled at her job but becomes involved in a struggle for survival when paranoia checks in mixed with consequences. Penn as the cop recently lost his wife to infidelity then to death. The issue with Penn is that he is a great actor positioned mainly as a potential romantic tease to Kidman. Catherine Keener as Penn's partner is another fine actor wasted in standard material that is beneath her. Earl Cameron as the political figure in question is not seen much but the role is polished with plot twists and facts that have Kidman taking aim. Perhaps the film's one weakness is that supporting characters aren't as well drawn as they should be. Tense thriller about operations and hearing things you shouldn't. Score: 9 / 10

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