Television journalist Edward R. Murrow takes on Joe McCarthy in the early 1950s.
Wow. All I can say is WOW.
This was so good.
You should be watching it, you know.
Instead of reading my review.
Because all I’m going to be doing is telling you to GO SEE THIS MOVIE.
Okay, I get it, you’re at work, you can’t get away and my movie reviews are giving you a few moments of vicarious pleasure in your drab slough of employment.
So be it. This movie was WONDERFUL.
Firstly, it’s very short, 93 minutes. What this means is that they not only had a tight script and not a lot of extraneous stuff happening, but they needed good direction, cinematography and editing to pull this off and make it as good as it is.
And I say BRAVO! on all three counts. The script is a little gem, perfectly edited, short and punchy, with not a wasted scene or moment. The camerawork is so wonderful, all in black and white, with actual footage artfully interpolated so that it works perfectly: often the footage is something someone is watching on tv, so the fact that it looks a little old and grainy is just right.
David Strathairn plays Murrow, brilliantly. Jeff Daniels is here, and Frank Langella (a Serious Honey for two movies, then he kind of dropped out of movies and did theatre…but every now and then he’s back in the movies as a very interesting character actor.)
And George Clooney. Not only did I actually not remember that this was a Clooney movie going into it (this Otter’s brain is just not what it once was) but I actually didn’t recognize him until half an hour into the movie…his character is so low key, although central to the story, that he just doesn’t seem like the George Clooney (Serious Honey) that we’ve all come to admire. A lot. Mmm, makes me want to see From Dusk To Dawn again…and O Brother, Where Art Thou? and…but you get the drift. Serious Honey. And now: excellent director. And excellent co-screenplay writer. Wow. Not only a renaissance man, but a STUNNINGLY GORGEOUS renaissance man. Woof.
Actually, everyone in this movie is excellent, everything about it is excellent and it is truly a film for our (bush, patriot act, supreme court for sale, iraq, halliburton, ad-bloody-infinitum) time.
And may this Otter, in return for years of faithful reviewing, make only one request? Could I have the phrase, “DISSENT IS NOT DISLOYALTY” tattooed, or better yet branded, onto the forehead of every single person George W. Bush sees during any given day?
Okay, sorry, off my soapbox. Thank you, Mr. Clooney, for reminding us that yet another dark period in our nation’s history also had an ending, and the evil were brought down…may it happen soon.
Go see this movie, even if you don’t agree with the political stance it’s beautifully made and will be a great source for discussions in years to come, since it WILL WIN at least one Oscar and thus will be around for a long, long time.