How “The Interview” Handled the Assassination of Kim Jong-Un


A review by Richard Brody, with spoilers:

“The Interview” is a post-9/11 and, especially, a post-Iraq War meditation on a pre-9/11 theme: What should be done about a belligerent government (as opposed to an Al Qaeda-like non-state group) that poses a threat to the United States? More precisely: At what point is an act of war—because, of course, that’s what the planned assassination is—justified? As it turns out, the Rogen-Goldberg standard is a very high one (when the U.S. is in grave, imminent danger), and a counterfactual one (in the service of comedy, the film overhypes the North Korean threat).

Above: Seth Rogen, center, with James Franco and Diana Bang in “The Interview.” Photograph Courtesy Ed Araquel/CTMG, Inc.