Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Good Night , and Good Luck. (2005)

"If McCarthy gets tough, I'll use this secret laser box to destroy him!"

Genre: Drama

Starring: David Strathairn (Losing Isaiah; L.A. Confidential), Robert Downey Jr. (A Scanner Darkly; Kiss Kiss Bang Bang)

Directed By: George Clooney (Confessions Of A Dangerous Mind)

Overview: The biography of journalist Edward J. Morrow's 1954 battle with Joseph McCarthy and McCarthyism in general.

Acting: The roles were all really well chosen. Clooney's directed Confessions of a Dangerous Mind before this. I very much enjoyed that and I very much enjoyed this one too. It's like Clooney wanted to make sure that he picked some pretty experienced actors to play the parts to make up for his 'green' directorial skills. Either way I'm looking forward to his next film. The portrayal of Morrow was probably perfectly done, it looked real genuine.
Rating: 9

Cinematography: Shot in black in white to illustrate the era, nice touch. Little things like old tube TVs, the constant haze of cigarette smoke, the wood paneling in the offices. The fifties were an interesting place, but I wouldn't want to live there. Often the shots were nice and up close, really focused on the character's faces to maximize all the well portrayed and often subtle acting. Well done.
Rating: 8

Script: The writing was equally brilliant. There's a couple of moments that have a laugh, but overall, the whole story was damn serious, important and (I'm sure) pretty historically accurate. It's nice to have these period pieces that mirror current and modern injustice, without going out of their way to stab current governments in the face. I don't think Spielberg would have pulled it off with such subtlety. Anyways, more points for the truth.
Rating: 9

Plot: The tale is one of the underdog against the Fat Cat. Who doesn't like that? To think that Edward R. Morrow was the everyman, however, would belittle that legend. I like how the whole thing ends, I'll tell you that much, and the bittersweet victory is very good too. It's a real entertaining story. You'll like it if you're into this subject matter.
Rating: 8

Mood: The fact that there was actual archive footage used in the film brought us closer to the era, put us right there. The ever-full ashtrays, the Brylcreem, the costumes, the wood paneling! Even the little touch about the company policy of married people working together, everything is fifties, fifties, fiftes. Oh, it's nice.
Rating: 8

"No seriously, I think he's really going fry McCarthy..." "Is that so bad?"

Overall Rating: 84% (No Luck Needed in this Nigh Perfect Production)

Aftertaste:The demographic, admittedly was a little older than me, but I still loved it. Looking at the score I gave it, I'm surprised it rated this high. It's top quality, everything about it is great, nothing was left out. It's a film I would categorize as "Important". As good as it is though, I don't think I'll see it again, though everyone I know would benefit from a viewing.