Sunday, December 04, 2005

Good Night, and Good Luck. (2005)

This is a stirring drama fraught with unexpected topical relevance. Clooney the activist seems to be telling us that, like Murrow, we should stand up and cry bullshit on our leaders whenever they overstep their boundaries. What's impressive, though, is that this cri de coeur is merely hanging out in the background while a crackerjack historical entertainment is unspooling before us. Even if you put aside the film's links to modern-day situations, it's still a handsomely mounted and expertly acted David-and-Goliath drama, with all the political, social and personal pressures felt by Murrow and Co. explicated in full. Really, the ensemble here is terrific, which was probably to be expected from Strathairn and Downey and Clarkson, but Ray fucking Wise runs away with his every scene, so somebody's doing something right. A controlled and mature film, miles ahead of Clooney's ADD-riddled debut Confessions of a Dangerous Mind; Hollywood-liberal filmmakers everywhere should watch this and learn how to cloak their hectoring in the Trojan horse of dramatic believability.

Grade: B+


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