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Leo, JLaw Are Trying to Warn Us in ‘Don’t Look Up’

You know you’re in deep doodoo when that planet-destroying comet on a collision course with Earth isn’t your biggest problem.

Your biggest problem: You’re the scientist who discovered the darned thing but nobody has the patience or the bandwidth or the political will to believe it. And it’s coming. In six months. That’s a fact.

That the comet is a stand-in for climate change is hardly a secret going into “Don’t Look Up,” Adam McKay’s exceedingly watchable, funny and star-studded yet somewhat chaotic satire. For one thing, its star is Leonardo DiCaprio, for whom climate change awareness is a passion.

What becomes clear soon enough is that the film is also about the pandemic, and vaccine resistance, and the tendency in American society for issues that have nothing to do with politics to become hopelessly political.

“Don’t Look Up” sees McKay (“Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy” and “Talladega Nights”) returning to comedy after turning to darker, political themes in “The Big Short,” about the 2008 financial crisis, and “Vice,” his Dick Cheney biopic.

As those last two films showed, McKay’s filmmaking can be dazzling, brainy and so fast-moving that one had better not sneeze for even a moment. The material is less dense here — the utter simplicity of a comet headed toward Earth is the whole point, really — and nobody suddenly launches into iambic pentameter, as Christian Bale and Amy Adams memorably did in “Vice” (although come to think of it, there are actors here who’d be perfect — we have Meryl Streep and Mark Rylance, for heaven’s sake).

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