When was the last time any moviegoer had heard words lysine and high fructose corn syrup in the same movie? I’m not talking about a documentary but rather a major motion picture with real celebrities and budgets and that sort of thing. Those hungry for a “corn- based” movie will be excited to check out the new film The Informant!.
While some film fans may be psyched to see the Matt Damon’s newest role as Mark Whitacre, it always marks a high point when director Steven Soderbergh helms something other than an “Ocean's” film. While many may expect this based on true events flick to offer up high drama (which it does to some degree), people may be in for a surprise when Soderbergh offers up more a lighthearted, comedic tone.
Although set in the early to late 90s, The Informant! seems and even sounds (thanks to Marvin Hamlisch’s score) like something more reminiscent of a wholesome 60s film. Soderbergh creates almost a narrative documentary with corn base lycene, corporate price fixing, and fraud at the film’s core. The Informant! delves right into the world of the corn and even high fructose corn syrup (the photo depicts a scene where one of the FBI agents spies yet another product containing high fructose corn syrup).
While most people might be excited to see this film, the people at agri-industry giant Archer Daniels Midland (ADM), probably won’t be lining up anytime soon to see it. As Whitacre mentions in the film that most people haven’t heard about ADM but they have their hand in an outrageous number of processed foods. The film cleverly follows and comedic/dramatic line to show how ADM got caught price fixing lysine in the 90s. What’s another five cents for the liter of soda among friends?
Even though The Informant isn’t a “food film” per se, Soderbergh gives us an amusing peak behind the corporate food world curtain. Movies like The Informant! normally have the intent to entertain first (which it does) but also educates as well which in its subtle ways creates a small glimpse behind that man (or in the case company) behind the curtain.
Versatile American writer, director and producer whose Sex Lies and Videotape made a big splash at Cannes (and its title has become a cliche). There followed an interesting variety of small films: Kafka, King of the Hill, noir remake The Underneath, Schizopolis (which co-starred his ex-wife) and Gray's Anatomy.
Then came Out of Sight, a smart thriller which was successful enough to propel Soderbergh into the big league with The Limey, Erin Brockovich, Oscar-winning Traffic and classy remake Ocean's 11. When Full Frontal and his Solaris remake flopped, he made a sequel to Ocean's 11 called Ocean's 12, material he returned to with Ocean's 13. Che Guevara biopics, virus thriller Contagion and beat 'em up Haywire were next, with the director claiming he would retire after medication thriller Side Effects and Liberace biopic Behind the Candelabra. He returned after a period of even greater activity with heist flick Logan Lucky.