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Movie Review: Client 9: The Rise and Fall of Eliot Spitzer

Alternate Title: Who Shot the Sheriff?

Story: Political junkies will be delighted to see this pro-Spitzer expose about how the once amazingly popular Governor of the State of New York rose to the pinnacles of power and then crashed with an enormous thud after serving barely a year in office.

Writer and director Alex Gibney methodically tracks Spitzer's accomplishments as Attorney General of New York State. He collaborated with writer Peter Elkind (Rough Justice: The Rise and Fall of Eliot Spitzer). He highlights Spitzer's battles with corporate bigwigs, banks and financial institutions and how, in his crusading mode made a lot of enemies in high places.

Some of Spitzer's enemies delight in being talking heads in this documentary including scary men such as Home Depot founder Ken Langione and creepy Maurice 'Hank' Greenberg, ex-head of AIG.

Spitzer himself is front and center in the interview process and comes off as honest, proud, defiant and at times, self-deprecating. The scandal that brought down Spitzer is thoroughly covered - even debunking myths (including those much talked about black socks). Interviews with the madam of the escort service are particularly entertaining.

Is this film for everyone? I think so. It has lots to say about power, mad men and politics. For the record - I did not think he should have resigned. The cautionary part of the tale is simple - keep it zipped!

Watch the trailer here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WldZazpFy7I

Acting: This is a documentary so the category does not apply but some of these characters sure looked like they were acting to me. There is also the use of an actress in place of the call girl who spent the most time with the Governor.

Trivia: Alex Gibney is an American documentary film director and producer. His work as director include Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room (nominated in 2005 for Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature) The Human Behavior Experiments (2006), Jimi Hendrix and the Blues (2001), and Taxi to the Dark Side (winner of the 2007 Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature) focusing on an innocent taxi driver in Afghanistan who was tortured and killed at Bagram Air Force Base in 2002. Casino Jack and the United States of Money, chronicles the life of disgraced Washington lobbyist Jack Abramoff.

Predilection: I like documentaries - especially political ones.

Critters: Several shots of some of the beautiful animals at the Central Park Zoo including Gus the polar bear, the sea lions and Mei Mei the snow leopards.

Sex Spectrum: There is no sex shown but it is big topic of discussion.

Visual Art: Nyc looks like a jewel.

Theater Audience: About a dozen people. My movie buddy Sunjit loved the film.

Sappy Factor: 0

Quirky Meter: 0

Squirm Scale: I squirmed for what might have been in my great state of New York had Eliot Spitzer not imploded.

Drift Factor: I paid attention throughout.

Predictability Level: Unless you have been in a cave - there are no surprise endings.

Tissue Usage: 0

Oscar Worthy: Probably not.

Big Screen or Rental: Go for the big screen

Length: Two hours.

LOBO HOWLS: 8