Matt Damon Stars in “The Informant!” and I Saw the Movie


[Image above: Matt Damon as Mark Whitacre, in “The Informant!,” the youngest President of Archer Daniels Midland BioProducts Division,1989-95.]

Movie Review by June Morrall

I’ve been trying to crack the secret, psychological meaning of this movie. The “!” in the title says that there is something wrong with this Informant!. But where’s the “tell?”Is it because he can do two things at once? A “no-no” for a male who’s not supposed to multi-task? I’ll venture a little further out there, to the edge of the cracking cliff:  Was The Informant! a chemically altered man? Does that even make sense?

In this very funny movie, giving detail-hungry watchers the kind of humor you might need an acquired taste for, that is, it’s not going to make everybody laugh out loud like it did me:  Matt Damon carries the entire picture. (DETAIL!: The scenes take place in Ohio and in every high-level office there is a bust of President Lincoln, whose home state it was. You can’t miss them!)

This is a complicated script, moving at different levels, with A LOT of WORDS for a made-in-America movie,  and Damon works it deftly,  including his strategically placed, tight voice-overs.. He owns more cars than I can remember, driving a different cool model every time he’s on camera. The last one was an old gas hog which confused me completely after seeing beamers and mercs and a beautiful Porsch(e) or is it Porsch(a)?  He knows he wears a more fashionable, authentic-looking hairpiece and hipper ties than  does FBI Agent Shepherd, who convinces the multi-lingual, moral, but prone-to-lie Whitacre to wear a wire and tape international meetings where top level businessmen agree to fix the price of lysine–an amino acid that can make shrimp grow larger faster.  SO THERE! The film is based on a true story directed by Steven Soderbergh.