FotoFlexer_soderberghFinally got around to seeing Steven Soderbergh’s latest, The Informant, starring Matt Damon, mostly because I’m a fan, and because it looked amusing in the trailers. I’m not going to review a movie that has been out for 3 weeks other than to say it’s worth seeing. Damon plays the world’s least reliable narrator ever, and you’re never really sure if he’s just a pathological liar or severely mentally ill. Either way, the darkness of Damon’s character eventually overshadows all of the chuckles.

In an odd twist to film making, Soderbergh casts comedians in pivotal, non-comedic roles. The list is impressive too. Tom Papa, Rick “The Drake” Overton, Scott Adsit, Tom and Dick Smothers, Bob Zany, Patton Oswalt, Paul F. Tompkins, Jimmy Brogan, Andrew Daly and Allan Havey. It’s a virtual Who’s Been of Comedy Central. But why? It’s like Soderbergh wants to build up anticipation of laughter in the audience without having to deliver jokes.

He even uses a whimsical score by Marvin Hamlish to add to the build up of laughter that never comes. At least that seems to be what he’s doing, because I don’t think he wants us laughing at this character. He couldn’t, right?

Soderbergh’s other inspired bit of casting involves Tom Wilson as the Head of Security for ADM. We remember last seeing Wilson as “Biff” from the “Back to the Future” movies. I can only assume David Brenner was not available.

The other casting choices that made me question his motives were having Scott Bakula and Joel McHale as F.B.I. agents. Both Bakula and McHale have new television shows to promote. Either they are both on a pretty good run or the studio dropped them in like cans of Coke for some cross promotion. Not that they didn’t perform their respective parts well, but I’m guessing some “actors” might have been available.

I guess I should just be grateful he didn’t work Julia Roberts into the mix and shut up.

Hey, speaking of dead comedians, Soupy Sales took one final pie to the face. Unfortunately, the Grim Reaper put a brick in it. Rest in peace, funny man. You’ll be missed.