Like previous quality Steven Soderbergh films, "The Informant" deals with corruption and how this reflects on the overall state of the United States of America. Unlike his previous films like "Erin Brockovich" and "Traffic", this one is a comedy.
The U.S. government has decided it is high time to go after companies who illegally fix prices. Mark Whitacre (Matt Damon – The Bourne Identity, The Green Zone) has worked his way up to the management level at ADM, a company involved with lysine developing. The FBI approaches Mark and asks him to spy on his company for them. Unwilling at first, he is eventually pressured into doing it. Caught up in the thing he is doing, Mark begins to believe that he is a real secret agent in the FBI. A total amateur, Mark's lies soon catch up with him and everything comes crashing down around him.
This is an odd kind of film (which will not be suited to everyone's tastes) in that it is trying to be funny about a subject (price fixing) that is not funny. Somehow Soderbergh manages to make this film funny despite the secrecy, deception, corruption, and conspiracies it involves. The humour is the film is dark and very random, at times. You have to have a taste for it.
Matt Damon does a terrific job as the twitchy, dorky Mark Whitacre. It is almost as if he was born to play this role. He gets the odd behaviour required of the character bang on without making it a complete caricature. He plays this totally self-absorbed idiot and still manages to make him seem real. Now that is talent!
It is a good film that fans of dark comedy will like, but it is the type of film you will only want to watch once.