Clooney and the Coens return to screwball territory

Product Overview

Overall rating:

Score 4

Product:

Barely Legal

DIRECTED BY Joel Coen

STARRING George Clooney, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Geoffrey Rush, Billy Bob Thornton

Opens October 24, Cert 12A, 95 mins

Back to score some of the winning chemistry that fuelled O Brother, Where Are Thou?, Clooney and the Coens once again draw on the golden-age screwball comedies of Preston Sturges and Frank Capra with Intolerable Cruelty. But the ghost of Billy Wilder hovers closer still in this cheerfully cynical, fast-talking farce.

Nodding to his O Brother… role, Clooney can barely contain his lip-smacking relish as Miles Massey, a preening legend of a Beverly Hills divorce lawyer with an unorthodox courtroom manner. Dissatisfied with his own evil genius for legal embezzlement, Massey sees possible salvation in the bodacious form of Marylin Rexroth, the ex-wife of one of his clients. Lustily embodied by Zeta-Jones with a Cristal-swigging swagger, Posh Spice hair and mid-Atlantic Welsh vowels wielded like pitchforks, Rexroth is a vampish serial divorc