The Laundromat [2019] ★★

Steven Soderbergh is a director that I’ve greatly admire over the years, which is why it’s difficult for me to admit that I couldn’t entirely enjoy his latest satire “The Laundromat”, streaming on Netflix. It has an all-star cast (including Meryl Streep, Gary Oldman, Antonio Banderas, Jeffrey Wright, Sharon Stone, David Schwimmer and James Cromwell!) and an intriguing story to tell: when her husband dies in a a boat accident, a widow (Streep) begins investigating a fake insurance policy, only to expose layers and layers of corruption within the system. Soderbergh takes a satirical approach to his material, but the subject couldn’t be more serious. All of this is mildly amusing and carried out with panache by an expert cast. It’s fun, at first, watching Streep try to put the pieces together…but it doesn’t add up to much. Halfway through, my mind started to wander. Instead of being pulled in, I found myself losing interest in whatever was happening onscreen. Film buffs might enjoy seeing all these actors in one movie, but I wish the screenplay were more cohesive. I still admire Soderbegh and his unusual approach to films, but I can’t recommend “The Laundromat” to anyone.

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