The Men Who Stare at Goats was a critically-bashed movie of 2009, critics saying it was George Clooney's dumbest movie of the year (Entertainment Weekly). I just watched this movie a while ago, and I saw immense potential in it, for it was very decent in the beginning. Later, however, when they brought the idea of goats in play, it was all downhill from there.
Goats starts with Bob Wilton (played by Ewan McGregor), who is a reporter searching for the story of a lifetime in Iraq, when he encounters Lyn Cassady, a former member of some New Earth military program. In this organization, members of it test their paranormal powers to...I actually didn't know why they did it, they just did because of their weird leader. Their leader, Bill Django (played by Jeff Bridges), was a surviving Vietnam war hero (?) and he got shot there, which triggered some new outlook on life for him.
Anyway, Lyn tells Bob of his life, how he became "top-of-class" in the unit and how his rivalry with Larry Hooper began. Larry Hooper (played by Oscar-winner Kevin Spacey) was also a skilled paranormal-guy, and he loathed how Lyn was as good as he was, even better. So, later when Lyn left the unit (because he killed a goat with his awesome mind powers bringing a curse on the unit), Larry took charge. He accused Bill of drug-using (which we know he did) which caused Bill to be stripped of his rank as Lieutenant Colonel (or Colonel Lieutenant). Larry was now the leader, which transformed the hippie-unit to some Nazi-Reich-unit (in comparison, that's what it was). So, now those poor marijuana-induced soldiers had to actually do work for a change! Oh, the inhumanity of Larry! And in the military? Heartless, truly heartless.
Fortunately, the trio of Bob, Bill, and Lyn saved the day by drugging all the cadets and Larry with some hazardous drug, kind of like acid. Everyone lived happily ever after, even the goats.
Well, this was certainly a strange movie, but it's theories in the beginning, said by George Clooney, really showed some ability [of the movie] that it could have been exceptional. However, two things brought it down. One, the annoying, stupid goats. And two, the disgusting Jeff Bridges. I honestly strongly dislike the "Dude" because of his performance as the "Dude". I really really really hated the famous Big Lebowski, and thought it had no plot, terrible acting, and was just plain boring. Anyway, in Goats, he played the leader of this (semi-)intellectual organization, which I could not envision because Bill Django (and Jeff Bridges) gave off a...DUMB, unintellectual aroma. But, hey, that's just me!
I give this a 61/100, solely because of George Clooney and his charm and wisdom. Also, I was enormously glad that Kevin Spacey made an appearance here, for he is one of my favorite actors, and it is a shame he stopped making movies like he used to. And, like I said before, the goats were a real downer to the overall film quality. This is including Jeff Bridges.
(P.S. As you may have noticed, I only said Kevin Spacey was an Oscar-winner, when Bridges and Clooney were also winners. This is on-purpose, because Spacey's performances actually deserved Oscars)