Film Review: Good Night, and Good Luck.

Tonight I once again ventured out to one of the environments I dread: the mall. I don’t like big crowds of people and I don’t like feeling invisible as people constantly brush by, when there is so much room for them to go around!

Good Night, and Good Luck. opened today. It tells the behind-the-scenes story of the media battle between Edward R. Murrow and Senator Joe McCarthy in the early 1950s. It was directed, co-written, and co-stars George Clooney and features a large cast of well-known actors including David Strathairn – who does a great job in portraying the broadcasting icon – Robert Downey Jr., Jeff Daniels, Patricia Clarkson, and Frank Langella.

Not having grown up during the time of the House Un-American Activites Committee (HUAC) – when my parents, themselves, were still learning to walk and talk – and having only a passing knowledge of the subject, I found the film to be rather informative and, as far as I could tell, was a good representation of the debate that ensued between the powerful senator and the highly respected journalist.

While, at times, it felt a touch slow and could’ve used a little more… something… Good Night, and Good Luck. was a well thought out, worthy-watch. The film, while set 50 years ago, is timely when considering the political situation in our own country. It calls for accountability in leadership and simply asks that those in power do not go unchecked. There is a responsibility for due process before hasty decisions, for integrity in proceedings, and for avoiding even the appearance of impropriety. McCarthy accused those with whom he disagreed of being anti-American. When he turned his sights on Murrow – a journalist of unquestionable character who earned the trust and respect of the people during his rooftop reports during the bombings of London by the Germans – it was the beginning of the end.

Good Night, and Good Luck. is certainly worth a trip to the theater. Whether you are a history buff, a fan of the period-piece, or just a film enthusiast you will find this to be quality cinema.

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