Let’s just be honest here and admit that George Clooney is one incredibly attractive guy. I’m referring to more than just his roguish charm, unflappable sense of humor, and boyish grin of course as his most appealing characteristic is his professional ethos. He’s popular, wealthy, and capable of being cast in as many big budget films as he could want, but he consistently returns to to smaller, more personal films that tell stories and explore ideals that he values even when it earns him flack. That and his villa on Italy’s Lake Como make him someone that I would not rush to kick out of my hypothetical, friends only, no-touching-unless-we’re-having-a-pillow-fight bed.

As an actor he’s balanced studio pics like the Ocean’s Eleven films with smart, adult thrillers like Michael Clayton and The American. As a director he’s countered the brilliant Good Night, and Good Luck with… Leatherheads. Okay, bad example, but the point is the man has range.

Check out the trailer for his latest directorial effort below.

Looks pretty good, no? Even if the story didn’t appear compelling it’d be hard to go wrong that cast. Clooney, Gosling, Paul Giamatti, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Jeffrey Wright, Marisa Tomei… these are some stellar actors going toe to toe here in a story that seeks to point out both the good and bad inherent in our political system.

That could lead to a bland political film (Swing Vote) or even a heavily partisan one (Lions For Lambs), but it appears Clooney has tapped that universal frustration and turned it into a thriller of sorts that with any luck will approach the unsung greatness of Rod Lurie’s brilliant and underseen The Contender.

The Ides of March hits screens October 7th.

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