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Apart from a few plot conveniences and an ending that may be too subdued for its own good, "Absolute Power" is actually a gripping—and surprisingly human—thriller about a man (Clint Eastwood) who witnesses a murder while burgling a house, and now knows enough to bring down the president of the United States. Gene Hackman is suitably smarmy as the president and Judy Davis is especially slippery as his chief of staff, but it is Ed Harris who provides this movie with a certain vulnerable core. Together with Eastwood, these two formidable actors provide William Goldman's ("All the President's Men," "Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid") script an empathetic personality sorely, sorely lacking in all other thrillers over the past year.
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