Scott’s ‘The Counsellor’ discussion worthy, but messy

Jake Cochran, Editor-in-Chief

The movie “The Counsellor,” is a movie that people will say should be liked. It has everything that a good movie should have, the only problem is that it essentially feels like it is borrowing some of the most popular aspects of other popular and well-regarded books-turned-movies.
To give a brief overview of the theme, the movie centralizes around the idea that when people that know how bad things can be, tell another how bad things can be, things will end up this way.
So while this is essentially the concept told to three-year-olds about stoves, the idea needs to be tested by some misguided sense of curiosity, which ends with a burnt hand and tears. The same idea can be applied to this movie in a roundabout way.
Playing the part of the teary-eyed child is Michael Fassbender, a lawyer that gets greedy with his lifestyle and tries to make a quick buck by getting involved with drug trafficking. Playing the part of his naïve doe-eyed love interest is Penelope Cruz, who plays the single-minded role as well as anyone could have.
The rest of the cast is fleshed out with Jaiver Bardem, perfectly executing the role of man that is too rich for a fashion-sense, and his love interest, Cameron Diaz. Diaz plays a grim, dark character that’s seen it all and has every interaction so poetically planned it becomes painful.
Also, Brad Pitt is worked into the plot as a guy that has seen people touch the hot stove and burn. He knows not to touch it that often, but still does it because he’s gotten good at it and hasn’t gotten burned yet.
The movie overall is a great discussion piece, but each character and interaction get so bogged down in overly metaphorical dialogue that it becomes confusing as to why the interaction is even happening in the first place.
But with such a nihilistic ending it’s hard for me personally not to like it. As a viewer, if the movie is seen anywhere other than the solitude of an empty theater, some of the meaning and value might be lost with almost all of the content tying back into itself.
While the movie seems to dig into the vault for stock character-types, it has made do with what was there. It was an enjoyable experience worth the inevitable car-ride discussion, even if the discussion ends with why sucker fish in aquariums will never be seen the same.