The film’s light, sardonic approach is a tricky match with its subject matter: 9/11; power-crazed, empty-souled politicians; dark ambitions. It’s entertaining, sure, but a lot of us might not feel like laughing.
It isn’t “Working Girl” — Second Act is more earnest and less funny — but it’s a pleasant enough diversion, helped along immensely by Lopez’s warm screen presence and by a first-rate Sassy Best Friend performance by Leah Remini.
Eastwood is known for his ruthless efficiency as a filmmaker, but The Mule feels dashed off at best, barely even a movie. It’s a strange rough draft, poorly executed and disastrously performed, despite the starry cast.
You find yourself focusing on the details of Alexandra Byrne’s flowing costumes, or on the wince-inducing meticulousness of Robbie’s post-pox makeup, rather than caught up in the story. Except when Ronan’s face catches the light; there, Mary Queen of Scots finds its fire.