Body of Lies Too Conventional

Film has atmosphere but 'flawed' story
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Oct 10, 2008 1:26 PM CDT

(Newser) – The CIA thriller Body of Lies is “always crisp and watchable,” but “it ends up too unconvincing and conventional to consistently hold our attention,” writes Kenneth Turan in the LA Times. The story of an anti-terror mission played out on the ground but guided from the comfort of Washington boasts “crackling action,” but “ambience ultimately cannot overcome fundamental flaws” in the story.

Peter Travers is more forgiving: the film, he writes in Rolling Stone, “has the gritty feel of something observed firsthand” and delivers a “hard kick in the teeth to American duplicity.” But A.O. Scott of the New York Times disagrees, calling the picture “busy, contrived and lifeless.” Asks Scott: “If terrorism has become boring, does that mean the terrorists have won?”