Michael Clayton (2007) - Rotten Tomatoes

Michael Clayton (2007)



Critic Consensus: Michael Clayton is one of the most sharply scripted films of 2007, with an engrossing premise and faultless acting. Director Tony Gilroy succeeds not only in capturing the audience's attention, but holding it until the credits roll.

Movie Info

Michael Clayton (George Clooney) handles all of the dirty work for a major New York law firm, arranging top-flight legal services and skirting through loopholes for ethically questionable clients. But when a fellow "fixer" decides to turn on the very firm they were hired to clean up for, Clayton finds himself at the center of a conspiratorial maelstrom. Once an ambitious D.A., Clayton is now a shell of his former dynamic self, thanks to a divorce, an unfortunate business venture, and astronomical debt. Though he longs to leave the cutthroat, ethically dubious world of corporate law behind, Clayton's poor financial situation and devotion to firm head Marty Bach (Sydney Pollack) leave him little choice but to remain on the job and tough it out. Meanwhile, litigator Karen Crowder (Tilda Swinton) finds her entire company's future hinging on the outcome of a multi-billion-dollar settlement overseen by Clayton's friend, star lawyer Arthur Edens (Tom Wilkinson). When Edens snaps and decides to blow the whistle on the questionable case, sabotaging the defense, Clayton must decide between his loyalty and his conscience. ~ Jason Buchanan, Rovimore
Rating: R (for language including some sexual dialogue)
Genre: Mystery & Suspense, Drama
Directed By:
Written By: Tony Gilroy
In Theaters:
On DVD: Feb 19, 2008
Box Office: $49.0M
Warner Bros. Pictures - Official Site


George Clooney
as Michael Clayton
Tilda Swinton
as Karen Crowder
Tom Wilkinson
as Arthur Edens
Sydney Pollack
as Marty Bach
Michael O'Keefe
as Barry Grissom
Denis O'Hare
as Mr. Greer
Robert Prescott
as Mr. Verne
Ken Howard
as Don Jeffries
Terry Serpico
as Mr. Iker
Julie White
as Mrs. Greer
Kevin Hagan
as Raymond Clayton
Austin Williams
as Henry Clayton
David Lansbury
as Timmy Clayton
Remy Auberjonois
as Fifth Year
Heidi Armbruster
as Anna's Sister
Sean Cullen (II)
as Gene Clayton
Wai Chan
as Chinese Dealer
Brian Poteat
as Deposition Lawyer
Christopher Mann
as Lieutenant Elston
Alberto Vasquez
as Player No. 1
Edward Furs
as Milwaukee Captain
Brian Koppelman
as Player No. 2
Frank Wood
as Gerald
John Gerard Franklin
as Corrections Officer
Richard Hecht
as Auctioneer
William Raymond
as Gabe Zabel
Jason Strong
as First Year
Amy Hargreaves
as Interviewer
Pun Bandhu
as Fourth Year
David Zayas
as Detective Dalberto
Danielle Skraastad
as Bridget Klein
Julia Gibson
as Stephanie Clayton
Susan Egbert
as Michelle
Sam Gilroy
as Copy Kid
Maggie Siff
as Attorney #1
Sarah Nichols
as Barry's Assistant
Jordan Lage
as Partner
Neal Huff
as First Associate
Paul Juhn
as Second Associate
Mike Scelza
as Poker Consultant
John Thompson
as Jail Guard
Pamela Gray
as Cindy Bach
Bill Raymond
as Gabe Zabel
Show More Cast

News & Interviews for Michael Clayton

Critic Reviews for Michael Clayton

All Critics (196) | Top Critics (44)

[A] smoldering corporate thriller.

Full Review… | October 18, 2008
Top Critic

Clooney's glamorous intelligence is deepened by his constant hints that slickness, like corporate integrity, is just an act.

Full Review… | February 22, 2008
I.E. Weekly
Top Critic

There's a lot of skill involved in Michael Clayton and an understated, ambiguous hero that's becoming rare in modern film. Even if under its subtle surface there isn't really much there, the surface is good enough to make it worthwhile.

Full Review… | April 8, 2011

Michael Clayton is a chilling, intense conspiracy thriller, filled with intriguing characters and great performances.

Full Review… | July 7, 2010
Matt's Movie Reviews

Equates serious inquiry with inert filmmaking

Full Review… | August 27, 2009

Clooney's latest venture into panache is thriller style in Michael Clayton.

Full Review… | February 2, 2009
Fayetteville Free Weekly

Audience Reviews for Michael Clayton


Though not the most entertaining or innovative film, Michael Clayton is still a compelling, smart, and satisfying thriller that features strong acting and an interesting premise.

Matthew Samuel Mirliani
Matthew Samuel Mirliani

Super Reviewer


Corporate greed's at the middle of this look at the behind the scenes legal wrangling in a wrongful death lawsuit, greed vs. morality.
The leads are good (especially
Swinton) even if the pace is slow at first, so distracting.

Kevin M. Williams

Super Reviewer

The standard of filmmaking in ''Michael Clayton'' is impeccable. The plot threads tie together wonderfully, the performances from Clooney, Swinton and Wilkinson are outstanding and the tension that runs throughout the film is so high. Gilroy's script is wonderful with such hard-hitting dialogue and the development of each character is incredibly solid. If you're looking for a superbly assembled and suspenseful drama, ''Michael Clayton'' is as perfect as you could get.

Liam Gadd
Liam Gadd

Super Reviewer

Michael Clayton Quotes

Michael Clayton: Im Sheeva, the god of death!
– Submitted by Aron B (4 years ago)
Michael Clayton: The police don't call.
– Submitted by Annie A (4 years ago)
Michael Clayton: I'm not the guy you kill. I'm the guy you buy! Are you so fucking blind that you don't even see what I am? I sold out Arthur for 80 grand. I'm your easiest problem and you're gonna kill me?
– Submitted by Alejandro O (4 years ago)
Michael Clayton: You're so fucked. Here let me get a picture while I'm at it.
– Submitted by Chris P (5 years ago)

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