Knife Fight

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Rob Lowe in Knife Fight

Thanks to his pitch-perfect portrayal of Parks and Recreation’s Type A–personality-run-amuck boss, we’re willing to forgive Rob Lowe for virtually anything. This pitiful excuse for a political satire, however, seriously tests that theory: Not even the actor’s facility for playing go-getters can enliven a script that forces his campaign spin doctor to engage in lazy cynical posturing one second and didactic ethical conversations with his young assistant (Jamie Chung) the next. Everyone from Eric McCormack’s caricature of a Southern candidate to Julie Bowen’s celebrity newscaster are simply straw men for writer-director Bill Guttentag’s argument that elections are a dirty business—a point that’s been made far more sharply in every other movie of this ilk.

Follow David Fear on Twitter: @davidlfear

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