The knight of the story is Steven played by Ryan Gosling. He is a clever campaign manager who works tirelessly for Mike Morris (played by George Clooney) because he naively believes in the candidate and his message. Steve is soon discarded like pawn. He discovers that beliefs don't matter. Integrity doesn't matter. Loyalty does not matter. Winning matters. What you see is NOT what you get, for politics is nothing but a shell game. In the end, the game destroys his integrity, loyalty, and beliefs and he realizes that the only way to win is to play dirty like the "elephants." Politics is life and he plays to win.