The swan song of noted director William Friedkin is a fitting and memorable send-off from a man who loved telling stripped-down stories about complex people. Based on Herman Wouk’s famous play, the film is as bare-bones as can be—set entirely in one room with no frills and not a word of extraneous dialogue. Kiefer Sutherland leads the solid cast and is at the top of his game as Lt. Commander Queeg, the officer unceremoniously relieved of duty during a cyclone at sea. It’s a gripping 100 minutes of nothing but talking, but Friedkin makes it his own and demonstrates the power of staying out of the way and letting great actors do their thing.

4.5/5 stars