Charlie Wilson's War
Charlie Wilson's War ★★ 2007 (R)
In the “truth is stranger than fiction” category, Charlie Wilson (Hanks) is a hard-drinking, pleasure-loving Democratic congressman from East Texas who's also resourceful and interested in foreign affairs. Houston socialite Joanne Herring (Roberts in big hair) is a power broker who convinces Charlie that they can help end the cold war by arming the Afghan mujahideen so they can defeat the invading Russkies. (It's set in the 1980s.) Charlie heads off to Afghanistan to check things out and is given assistance by renegade CIA op Gust Avrakotos (Hoffman), which leads back to some D.C. maneuvering. A big story (based on the bestseller by George Crile) that's packed into a brief running time, so things seem just a little hurried, with Hanks and Hoffman vying to see who can steal the picture. 97m/C DVD . US Tom Hanks, Julia Roberts, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Amy Adams, Ned Beatty, Emily Blunt, Om Puri, Ken Stott, John Slattery, Denis O'Hare, Peter Gerety, Brian Markinson; D: Mike Nichols; W: Aaron Sorkin; C: Stephen Goldblatt; M: James Newton Howard.