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Burn After Reading (2008)

Updated: Jun 22

R | 1h 36min | 7/10 #comedy #crime #drama

Parental Rating: R (Restricted – Under 17 requires accompanying parent or adult guardian.)


 
 

➱ STORYLINE:

Burn After Reading (2008) is a dark comedy that follows a series of interconnected events triggered by the discovery of a disc containing the memoirs of a former CIA analyst, Osborne Cox. When the disc falls into the hands of two bumbling gym employees, Linda Litzke and Chad Feldheimer, they see it as an opportunity to make some quick cash. Their misguided attempts to exploit the information lead to a series of comedic misunderstandings, blackmail, and espionage involving several characters, including a womanizing U.S. Marshal and a paranoid CIA superior.


➱ STAFF REVIEW:

Burn After Reading (2008), directed by Joel and Ethan Coen, is a sharp and witty satire that showcases the Coen brothers' talent for blending humor with dark and absurd scenarios. The ensemble cast delivers stellar performances, with standout roles from George Clooney, Frances McDormand, Brad Pitt, John Malkovich, and Tilda Swinton. Brad Pitt, in particular, shines as the dim-witted but enthusiastic Chad. The film’s intricate plot, clever dialogue, and the Coens' signature style of storytelling create a chaotic yet entertaining experience. Burn After Reading is a biting commentary on the absurdity of espionage and human folly.


➱ CREDITS:

Directors:

- Joel Coen

- Ethan Coen

Writers:

- Joel Coen

- Ethan Coen

Based on:

- Original screenplay by Joel Coen and Ethan Coen

Starring:

- George Clooney as Harry Pfarrer

- Frances McDormand as Linda Litzke

- Brad Pitt as Chad Feldheimer

- John Malkovich as Osborne Cox

- Tilda Swinton as Katie Cox

- Richard Jenkins as Ted Treffon

- J.K. Simmons as CIA Superior

Produced by:

- Joel Coen

- Ethan Coen

- Tim Bevan

- Eric Fellner

Cinematography: Emmanuel Lubezki

Edited by: Roderick Jaynes

Music by: Carter Burwell

Production Company:

- Focus Features

- Working Title Films

- Relativity Media

Distributed by:

- Focus Features

Release date: September 12, 2008

Run Time: 1h 36min

Country: United States

Languages: English

Budget: $37 million

Box office: $163.7 million


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