The CIAs hunt is on for the mastermind of a wave of terrorist attacks. Roger Ferris is the agencys man on the ground, moving from place to place, scrambling to stay ahead of ever-shifting events. An eye in the sky a satell... more »ite link watches Ferris. At the other end of that real-time link is the CIAs Ed Hoffman, strategizing events from thousands of miles away. And as Ferris nears the target, he discovers trust can be just as dangerous as it is necessary for survival. Leonardo DiCaprio (as Ferris) and Russell Crowe (as Hoffman) star in Body of Lies, adapted by William Monahan (The Departed) from the David Ignatius novel. Ridley Scott (American Gangster, Black Hawk Down) directs this impactful tale, orchestrating exciting action sequences and plunging viewers into a bold spy thriller for our time.« less
Michel D. (michelann) from WALNUT GROVE, MO Reviewed on 8/3/2015...
Action and suspense throughout this great movie! Very timely in subject matter (Iraq, CIA intelligence, and the mind games played by each side) make for a great entertaining film.
1 of 1 member(s) found this review helpful.
Averi K. (leolover) from ALACHUA, FL Reviewed on 2/15/2011...
This movie was good but not leonardo dicaprio's best.
1 of 2 member(s) found this review helpful.
Michael M. (macddesign) from UNION GAP, WA Reviewed on 10/8/2009...
This movie is a thrilling account of modern counter terrorism, Dicaprio has really turned over an new leaf with this movie and the movie Blood dimond. This aint no sissy titanic crap, this is the new era of action for Dicaprio. Suporting role by rusell Crowe was perfect representation of his character. If you like this type of movie youl like Body of lies. Ive watched at least 6 or 7 times and still find it highly entertaining.
1 of 1 member(s) found this review helpful.
Body Of Artistic Movie Making
Kevin Mattingly | Harrisburg, IL USA | 02/19/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I have been awaiting the release of this dramatic action thriller directed by Ridley Scott and Starring Leonardo DiCaprio and Russell Crow for a long time and I was not disappointed.
DiCaprio plays a C.I.A. agent in the middle east who is trying to collect intelligence and is running into twists and turns around every corner. DiCaprio's performance is outstanding. You completely forget who he is and become immersed as him as a C.I.A. agent who is undercover. This is quite an acting job considering that he is the furthest thing from that. He has the grizzled appearance of someone undercover and his scenes are so strong and commanding that he doesn't have that baby boy aspect to him that I've seen in other of his pictures. His was an Oscar worthy performance.
There is the eye in the sky tracking DiCaprio by camera from above as he goes about his seemingly rouge missions for the C.I.A. Russell Crowe plays the older C.I.A. family man who is in contact with Ferris (DiCaprio) as he walks the minefield that is intelligence gathering in the middle east. Crowe is absorbed in his daily life in America and seemingly is oblivious to the hardships and deadly consequences that Ferris is facing. This is an understated role for Crowe who also very good performance. He does not look at all like that same man who played The Gladiator. And I think this is the most relaxed character I've seen him play yet.
This film was expertly directed by Ridley Scott to the point that at times I felt as if I were there. You can almost feel the sand in your lungs and the stink of death and open air markets as you feast your eyes on this gem.
Although I'm not typically an action movie man this one reeled me in because you really didn't know what was next around the corner. The action scenes are great, by the way, even though that's not why I pick movies to watch.
This is a great movie and if you like the actors, director, and genre of this film then it is a definite for you to watch. I give it all five stars and will watch it again. Kevin W. Mattingly Harrisburg Times."
""Body of Lies" is a taut, riveting thriller that weaves a tale of terrorism, espionage, and betrayal amid the current landscape of violence and retribution in the Middle East. The film is based on the novel by David Ignatius.
Leonardo DiCaprio continues to prove that he's got the acting chops and is believable in action films. Here he plays Roger Ferris, a CIA operative working to track down a bin Ladenesque terrorist named Al-Saleem. Al-Saleem's trail leads Ferris to Jordan, where he must balance working with and between his CIA handler (played with relish by an overweight, aged Russell Crowe) and the head of Jordanian intelligence (brilliantly played by Mark Strong), who are working at crosspurposes with each other. Ferris further complicates his mission by falling for an Iranian nurse (played by Golshifteh Farahani).
The movie uses wild technology, lies and counterlies, torture, and Ferris' growing disdain with the intelligence community. Some of the movie seems quite fanciful, and maybe it is, but except for a couple of places, it holds up as a brutually honest thriller.
"Body of Lies" isn't perfect, but it doesn't have to be. It's fiction. Some may find it unbelievable, but it's a movie, and that means it doesn't have to get everything right. It just has to entertain, and it certainly does."
Fast Paced, Action Packed Movie
Daniel G. Lebryk | 03/07/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Ridley Scott delivers again in a long line of excellent films. Blade Runner (Five-Disc Complete Collector's Edition) [Blu-ray], Alien (The Director's Cut), Thelma & Louise (Special Edition), and Black Hawk Down to name some of the more influential films he has directed.
The common theme, repeated again in Body of Lies, people's struggle to do the right thing, to fight for good. Scott also has a particular film style that he uses to great advantage in this film. This story in other hands would not be nearly as powerful. The pacing in Body of Lies is very similar to Blade Runner.
This is essentially a series of three short stories, or a play in three acts. Each act starts out calmly, building to a huge climax, and then there is the resolution. The common thread through each act is Leonardo DiCaprio and Russell Crowe. It would appear at first that this is going to be a very complicated film, mideastern conflict films or news articles are usually incredibly complex and mind numbing. However, Scott has managed to use the appropriate names and complicated cultures, but keeps the film focused on the critical story line - Roger Ferris (DiCaprio). In fact, the film is very simple and easy to follow.
In the first two acts, DiCaprio was believeable with his beard, dirty clothes, and speaking arabic languages. His character was a bit less believeable in the third act and as he started the relationship with Aisha. There were a few moments where the film wandered a bit. It was especially when Roger drove himself in a vehicle. That may sound strange, but it was emphasized several times, "do want to ride in the front or back?", that he was not driving. There was a loss of focus with him at the wheel.
Russell Crowe plays an overweight, southern boy, CIA director, named Ed Hoffman. He is simply perfect through the whole film. Never a misstep. Crowe has an amazing range in his acting ability.
The story is somewhat like 24, terriorist chases, a relationship with the pretty woman, trust me I know whay I'm doing, etc. But Body of Lies moves much farther ahead, and makes a stronger more believeable message than 24.
From a production standpoint, Ridley Scott is a master. This reviewer noted only a few missteps. One sadly obvious one was a pan to follow Roger walking across a hallway late in the film. Roger walks way out of focus and then back in - the camera movement was too radical and quick to keep focus. It sadly was not on purpose. Otherwise, everything else was spot on perfect considering the film genre.
This is definately an R rated film. There is a fairly brutal scene at the end, and some punishing (this was the term used in the film) earlier on. There's enough language and violence to land appropriately in this category. Probably not a film for younger viewers at all. There is no nudity.
The DVD contains no bonus features at all. Simply the movie, sound choices, and chapters. But that's the way it should be, the focus was on the quality of the transfer and DVD. Ridley Scott is actually a bigger fan of releasing different versions later on, instead of bonus features.
This was an exciting, easy to follow and understand film from start to finish. The ending was well near perfect."
BASED ON A NOVEL BASED ON A REAL LIFE CHARACTER
Keith Michael | CINCINNATI, OH United States | 12/15/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This movie is based on the novel of the same name by David Ignatius, Editorial Colmnist for The Washington Post.
Mr. Ignatius recently posted a column about the passing of the real-life spy, Gen. Saad Kheir, on whom he based the character 'Hani Pasha,' played by British actor Mark Strong in the movie.
Mr. Ignatius wrote:
Jordan's ace of spies
By David Ignatius Sunday, December 13, 2009
When the spy movie ends, the suave intelligence chief -- having outsmarted his enemies -- dusts off the lapels of his perfectly tailored suit and disappears into his world of illusion and control.
That's not how it ended in real life, alas, for Gen. Saad Kheir, the brilliant but emotionally wounded spymaster who headed Jordan's General Intelligence Department (GID) from 2000 to 2005. He died in a hotel room in Vienna on Wednesday of a heart attack, the official Jordanian news agency reported. He was just 56.
Kheir at his best was among the greatest Arab intelligence officers of his generation. He ran a series of masterful penetration operations against Palestinian extremist groups and, later, al-Qaeda. "He set the standard for how we do it," said one former CIA officer who worked closely with him.
I got to know Kheir five years ago when I was researching a novel about the Middle East called "Body of Lies," which was later made into a movie that starred Leonardo DiCaprio. Kheir was the model for my fictional Jordanian intelligence chief, "Hani Salaam." Like all GID chiefs, Kheir was addressed by the Ottoman honorific of "pasha," so I gave the sobriquet of "Hani Pasha" to my fictional version.
Hani Pasha (played in the movie by British actor Mark Strong) stole the show, and for a simple reason -- he was based on a true master of the game. My character's tradecraft, manners, even his wardrobe were all modeled on those of the real pasha. It was George Tenet, then director of the CIA, who first described to me Kheir's brilliance as an operator. I asked Tenet in 2003 if any foreign intelligence services had been especially helpful against al-Qaeda, and he answered instantly, "The Jordanians," and continued with Tenetian enthusiasm, "Their guy Saad Kheir is a superstar!"
So the next time I was in Amman, I asked the royal palace if I could meet the legendary intelligence chief, and it was duly arranged. I was driven to the GID's fearsome headquarters, past its black flag bearing the ominous warning in Arabic "Justice Has Come" and escorted upstairs to the pasha's office.
Kheir had a rough, boozy charm -- somewhere between Humphrey Bogart and Omar Sharif. He was dressed elegantly, as always -- in this case, a cashmere blazer, a knit tie and a pair of what looked to be handmade English shoes.
The pasha told me a few stories, and others filled in the details: He made his name penetrating Palestinian extremist groups, such as the Abu Nidal organization. Once he had burrowed into the terrorists' lair, he was able to plant rumors and disinformation that set the group's members fighting among themselves. Before long, Abu Nidal's fraternity of killers had imploded in a frenzy of suspicion and self-destruction. I stole that idea for "Body of Lies."
Kheir researched his targets so thoroughly that he got inside their lives. A former CIA officer told me about one sublime pitch: Kheir tracked a jihadist to an apartment in Eastern Europe and handed him a cellphone, saying: "Talk to your mother." The man's mom was actually on the line, telling him he was a wonderful son for buying her a new TV and a couch and sending her money. "The spoken message was, 'We can do good things for you.' The unspoken message was, 'We can hurt you,' " explained the CIA officer. I took that scene, too, verbatim.
Like many Arab intelligence services, the GID has a reputation for using brutal interrogation methods, and I'm sure that it didn't get the nickname "the fingernail factory" for nothing. But Kheir's successes in interrogation often came from a different kind of intimidation. Colleagues recall him standing behind a suspect, his voice deep with menace, as he talked of the suspect's family, friends and contacts. That was much scarier than physical violence would have been. He waited for them to break themselves, and it usually worked.
Kheir ran afoul of his boss, King Abdullah, when he began pushing into politics and business. It was the classic overreach of intelligence chiefs in the Middle East, and he was sacked in 2005. His dismissal took a cruel toll: Kheir could be seen carousing late at night at his favorite restaurant in Amman, no longer a master of the universe or even, fully, master of himself. But in his prime, he was a genius, and it's hard to think of a foreigner who helped save more American lives than Saad Pasha. "
Body of Lies (Widescreen Edition)
Arnita D. Brown | USA | 12/29/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"United State's Central Intelligence Agency's Middle East Representative, Roger Ferris, is based in Amman, Jordan, and is keeping a watch on a 'safe house' and believes it to be frequented by young Muslim males. He has information that Al Saleem may be behind terrorist attacks, but lacks any evidence to apprehend him or any of his associates. His plan to implicate Dubai-based Architect, Omar Sadiki, not only fails, his Iranian girlfriend, Aisha, gets abducted, and he must decide whether to surrender himself to her abductors to negotiate her release or leave her to their mercy. Leo does it again. Great story line with some unexpected twists. This movie is worth seeing a second time. Russell Crowe is so witty in his supporting role, excellent movie.