Confession: when I heard that Steven Soderbergh's next film, The Laundromat, was a retelling of the true story re: the Panama Papers (an elaborate money-laundering scheme which allowed the world's richest people to avoid paying taxes by hiding their money within a complicated series of shell corporations and off-shore bank accounts), I imagined something dry, maybe even a little boring.
I should have known better.
As you can see, The Laundromat (directed by Soderbergh and written by The Informant!'s Scott Z. Burns) looks to be neither dry nor boring. In fact, it looks like yet another of Soderbergh's rollicking, caustically funny adult comedies, filled with colorful characters being brought to life by some of our best living actors. In just under two minutes, The Laundromat has become one of our most highly-anticipated films of the year. Such is the power of an excellent trailer.
Moreover, such is the power of Soderbergh and Burns. I've said this a million times over at this point, but The Informant! is one of the funniest movies I've ever seen, a film I revisit with clockwork regularity. If The Laundromat is half as good as The Informant!, it'll still be one of the best movies of the year. Please, for the love of God: if you've not seen The Informant!, rectify that immediately.
Anyway, here's a plot synopsis:
"The film follows Ellen Martin (Meryl Streep), whose dream vacation takes a wrong turn and leads her down a rabbit hole of shady dealings that can all be traced to one Panama City law firm, run by seductive partners Jürgen Mossack (Gary Oldman) and Ramón Fonseca (Antonio Banderas). She soon learns that her minor predicament is only a drop in the bucket of millions of files linking an off-shore tax scheme to the world’s richest and most powerful political leaders."
The Laundromat premieres at the Venice Film Festival next week, ahead of a November 29th debut on Netflix. We'll be watching the moment it arrives. How 'bout y'all? Sound off in the comments below.