Foxcatcher

Bennett Miller follows his acclaimed Moneyball (2011) with the story of Olympic philanthropist John Eleuthère du Pont, and as in the earlier movie, competitive sports becomes the vehicle for a brutal economics lesson. A paranoid schizophrenic insulated by obscene wealth, du Pont used his family’s Foxcatcher farm as headquarters for a wrestling camp to groom athletes for the U.S. Olympic team; his tangled relationships with wrestling hopeful Mark Schultz and with Mark’s older brother, gold medalist Dave Schultz, ended tragically in January 1996 when du Pont murdered Dave. Miller made his name with Capote (2005), about the writing of In Cold Blood, and this true-crime drama shares with that book a fusion of narrative elegance and journalistic restraint; the fatherhood issues fueling the tension among Mark (Channing Tatum), Dave (Mark Ruffalo), and du Pont (a creepy, completely unrecognizable Steve Carell) are muted but powerfully realized.