The rapid-fire fall from grace of Eliot Spitzer, the former of Governor of New York, was indeed sudden and precipitous, and Alex Gibney’s documentary about the man, his flaws, and the many circumstances surrounding his outing is, for the most part, sharp and astute. Client 9 is creatively edited—some might call it scattered, but I really enjoyed the way Gibney bounced around between Spitzer’s strengths (a non-stop motor and thirst for results; a fierce desire to weed out corruption; a passion for equality and transparency) and weaknesses (an overly pugnacious approach with his peers that bordered on flat-out belittling; obtuse stubbornness). Rather than turn Client 9 into a sermon on morals or pigeonholing Spitzer’s idiotic mistake into an overall characterization of the man himself, Gibney shows us that Spitzer’s dalliances with prostitutes were a manifestation of something richer. What, exactly? Rampant insecurity, perhaps spurred by being the son of a highly successful real estate mogul? Self-loathing? A pure example of being power-hungry? We’re given flashes of all these possibilities—Spitzer himself speaks fairly regularly throughout the documentary, and candidly, at that—but I wish Gibney had dug even deeper into this fascinating, unique man. Because in so many ways, Eliot Spitzer sums up what we all suspect most politicians, in some form, are: brilliant but tainted individuals who, throughout their many years in the public spotlight, have accumulated many skeletons in their closets. The question becomes how much their mistakes should be held against them, and Client 9, by highlighting Spitzer’s fearless willingness to take on the biggest banks and Hedge Funds on Wall Street (numerous enemies made along the way be damned) without apologizing for his blunders and flaws, comes tantalizingly close to being a truly all-encompassing take on its subject matter…but doesn’t quite get there. It’s a solid documentary, one well worth seeing, but it could have been even better.