Meryl Streep is receiving the TIFF Tribute Actor Award at this year’s film festival, to go along with the North American premiere of her new film, The Laundromat, directed by Steven Soderbergh. I’m not going to lie, when I first heard Soderbergh made a movie starring Meryl Streep called The Laundromat, I assumed it would be one of his interesting iPhone projects about a laundromat. It is, in fact, a Netflix film about the Panama Papers. As much as I would like a low-budget Soderbergh movie about a laundromat, I am glad he is tackling the Panama Papers because I really need someone to explain it to me. I have never understood that scandal beyond “shady rich people sh-t”. Please, Soderbergh, break it down for me.
The trailer for The Laundromat has a distinctly The Big Short vibe, which is great because that movie effectively broke down the subprime mortgage collapse. I like how this trailer is structured like the trailer for a heist movie, with Meryl Streep standing in for the dogged cop tracking the world’s best gem thieves, Antonio Banderas and Gary Oldman. I like how they are both dressed like Sterling Archer going undercover in Cuba, and I like that Oldman is doing one of his silly voices like he would in a B-action movie.
And I ADORE Meryl’s jaunty bucket hat. This is some Columbo-level sh-t. She’s going to crack the case and no one will see her coming because her jaunty hat means no one takes her seriously. Soderbergh and screenwriter Scott Z. Burns (who is also at TIFF with his own film, The Report) have collaborated before, including on The Informant!, a vastly underrated Soderbergh film—featuring a superior Matt Damon performance—which is a twisty-turny whodunit hybrid about financial malfeasance. I love The Informant!, so I am here for a movie that takes that tone and applies it to the shady rich people sh-t I don’t understand. I had a low stress schedule worked out for TIFF which I am willing to throw out if it means I can make it to The Laundromat, so effective is Meryl’s bucket hat.