D: George Clooney
Paramount/Black Bear/Smokehouse (George Clooney, Grant Heslov, Joel Silver & Teddy Schwarzman)
W: Joel Coen, Ethan Coen, George Clooney & Grant Heslov
DP: Robert Elswit
Ed: Stephen Mirrione
Mus: Alexandre Desplat
PD: James D. Bissell
Matt Damon (Gardner Lodge), Julianne Moore (Rose / Margaret), Oscar Isaac (Bud Cooper), Noah Jupe (Nicky Lodge), Gary Basaraba (Uncle Mitch)
A Coen Brothers script directed by George Clooney, although the contrast of styles and additional material penned in takes the plot in directions that might baffle or frustrate regular cinemagoers, and the marketing trailer doesn't really portray the film accurately, and those expecting a crime thriller akin to Fargo are definitely going to be disappointed.
The genre is very much black comedy, with a huge dollop of social commentary thrown in. The film takes place in the mid-1950's in the small town of Suburbicon, an idyllic post-war picket fence community, where all seems crisp, clean and perfect. The natives grow restless when an African-American family move to the small town, where they are met with racism that stirs into mob-mentality violence.
Running concurrently with this story is a tale of murder which takes place in a neighbouring house, where a clean-cut American family have their lives disrupted by a break in, which results in the murder of the mother, which becomes more and more sinister as the plot unravels.
The moral is very much shoved in our faces that 1950's America was so unashamedly racist that it turned an eye to obvious crimes in its pursuit of the "American dream", and though the film is quite heavy-handed, there are a lot of good things about it.
The performances of Matt Damon and Julianne Moore (in a dual role) are darkly comic, the production design and cinematography are great and though the undertones of the film are quite messy, it's nowhere near as bad as other reviews may suggest.