A highly-charged political thriller thwarts an assassination attempt on streaming

syriana
via Warner Bros.

Having made his screenwriting debut by penning Samuel L. Jackson and John Travolta two-hander Rules of Engagement, before winning an Academy Award for his Traffic script, Stephen Gaghan opted to make his directorial debut on the panned psychological thriller Abandon, which also bombed hard. Going back to what he knew best, the filmmaker combined elements of his first two writing gigs to make amends with Syriana, his second feature-length effort from behind the camera.

The end result was a critical and commercial success, with the fraught political thriller almost recouping its budget twice over at the box office, while it drew strong notices from critics and landed Gaghan another Oscar nomination. Most of the plaudits were aimed at star George Clooney, though, who deservedly went home with the Best Supporting Actor trophy.

syriana
via Warner Bros.

It’s been 15 years since the movie was released, but the loose adaptation of Robert Baer’s memoir See No Evil has managed to plant an unexpected foothold on the streaming charts. As per FlixPatrol, the intense and complex tale of interweaving plotlines and surreptitious governmental behavior is fighting a winning battle on the iTunes ranks.

The stacked cast features Clooney’s veteran CIA agent drawn into an assassination plot that splinters off in numerous directions, with Jeffrey Wright’s merger-driving lawyer and Matt Damon’s energy analyst just two of the big names cast in pivotal roles, with the stacked ensemble also roping in Chris Cooper, Christopher Plummer, William Hurt, Mark Strong, and countless others to weave its intricate web of deceit and machinations.