Rated 4.0

The other Truman Capote movie: fated to be a tough sell, but fine work nonetheless. Writer-director Douglas McGrath (working from George Plimpton’s book) covers the same ground as Bennett Miller’s Capote because that’s what matters: how, in 1959, the author left his highly pampered Manhattan nest for rural Kansas to write a “nonfiction novel” about two men who murdered an entire family there—and how the experience left him shattered. Not that it should be this movie’s duty to live down the piety and chilly rigor of its commendable predecessor, but Infamous’ looser, less reflexively sermonizing stance makes a real difference. It lets us adore the man and reproach him at once. Truman is taken up here by the excellent, appropriately pug-faced English actor Toby Jones, who treats his task as a performance, not a stunt. The more important performance, though, comes from Daniel Craig as the murderer with whom Capote develops a riveting, deeply unsettling courtship.