Hail, Caesar! is a mediocre film that is silly in an entertaining way but is disappointing when compared to the high standard of the Co-en Brothers previous work.


The film is a day in the life of a 1950’s Hollywood ‘fixer’ Eddie Mannix (Josh Brolin) and follows the various interactions he has in his attempts to run the studio… most of them revolving around the stars of the movies.

It is an interesting premise that going into the cinema I felt someone with the skill of the Co-en Brothers could take a long way and make into a great movie.


Sadly I was disappointed… now the film is not terrible, it’s just not great either. It just feels too over-reliant on celebrity cameos and recreating old-style film scenes that it does on the plot.

Sure these scenes are a wonderfully tribute to Hollywood at the time and make for fantastic viewing – particularly Channing Tatum’s singing and dancing sailor number – they just feel over-used and the money/time could have been spent on making a plot that actually made sense.


This film is the first time that I’ve ever started to pick out plot loopholes in something written by the Co-en’s (on my first viewing anyway) and there are many to be had; so much of the film seems forced, it’s almost as if they’re looking for a way to the next set-piece. Character motivations fly all over the place and the ending just barely makes sense. Whereas a film such as Fargo or even Burn After Reading increases in tension with all the characters stories intertwining this film doesn’t… which left me feeling severely disappointed.

It is an interesting look at the time through a caricaturist lens; there is nothing serious in the film and it knows it. This does make for some fantastic comedy moments that are genuinely funny… unfortunately these do not occur often enough and some of the comic effect is taken away by the use of big-name actors in tiny roles (Jonah Hill is on screen for about a minute).


Hail, Ceasar! is a film I wanted to enjoy and I think if I watched it again with lowered expectations I would probably enjoy more. But for now at least it is just an average film.