This movie has the one quality I always hope to see in a movie and almost never do: It’s smart. Everything about it is smart—the plot, the writing, the dialogue, the acting…smart. Factor in that it’s a true story and Mike Nichols is behind the camera, wild horses couldn’t drive me away.
Charlie Wilson (Tom Hanks) is a Congressman, and he uses all the advantages that title brings to get drunk and get girls. He is the picture-perfect playboy. That is until he meets socialite Joanne Herring (Julia Roberts). Joanne has a cause the Afghani people, and in her world of money and power, there is nothing that cannot be accomplished. So Joanne presents Charlie with a plan to fund a covert war, arming Afghanistan in its effort to fight off Soviet invaders.
And that’s about it. Charlie, with the help of a CIA operative (Philip Seymour Hoffman), goes about calling in favors and using the appropriations committee to get weapons to the Afghanis. Just go see it. The film is, as I said, smart, funny, beautifully acted and brilliantly directed.