“In America, we give our lives to our jobs. It’s time to take them back.” Those words make up the tagline for “The Company Men,” available now on DVD.
The drama stars Ben Affleck, Chris Cooper, Kevin Costner, Tommy Lee Jones, Maria Bello and Craig T. Nelson. Set in Boston, it follows the effects of corporate downsizing in the high-stakes, white-collar world.
Affleck’s character is the most central. He’s fired from a six-figure job and is unemployed so long that he is forced into blue-collar work under the supervision of his brother-in-law, played by an antagonizing Costner. Meanwhile, Jones struggles to stay afloat with the same company, one he helped build, until he, too, is given a pink slip.
Though the film boasts superb actors and “The Company Men” held my attention from start to finish, I have to say that I expected more from the script. Affleck’s character evolves during his layoff, but for much of the film we see the rest of the cast merely treading water.
In the end, it is George Clooney’s movie of a similar theme, “Up in the Air,” that has more bite. I don’t expect to see the critical acclaim for “The Company Men” that filmmakers surely were expecting. For that reason, I’m not a fan.
Editor's note: There is no video version of Showtime with Sasha this week because she had a head cold.