Saturday, October 31, 2015


Movie Name: Truth
Year of Release: 2015
Director: James Vanderbilt
Stars: Cate Blanchett, Robert Redford, Topher Grace, Elisabeth Moss, Dennis Quaid, Bruce Greenwood, Stacy Keach, John Benjamin Hickey, David Lyons, Dermot Mulroney, Rachael Blake, Andrew McFarlane, Felix Williamson, Steve Bastoni, Louis Herthum
Genre: Drama
Score out of ten (whole numbers only): 7

Synopsis & Review:
"Truth" is the debut feature of celebrated screenwriter James Vanderbilt, who wrote films such as David Fincher's "Zodiac", Marc Webb's "The Amazing Spider-Man" and Roland Emmerich's "White House Down". The film is an adaptation of the book by Mary Mapes, and follows events that occurred at CBS in 2004, prior to the elections that took place that year. Mapes is a news producer for the tv show "60 Minutes", working with Dan Rather. Following a string of successful reporting pieces, they start investigating a new story based on information that former President Bush, then seeking re-election, had in the early 1970s received preferential treatment from officials of the Texas Air National Guard. After the story is aired, the documents upon which its based are called into question by a variety of sources, aiming to target its credibility. When the noise and controversy continue to increase, CBS orders an internal investigation targeting the team that gathered the content and built the expose.
"Truth" is a film that is directly inspired by the politically charged thrillers from the 70s, where reporters and the media played a part in exposing the corruption of politics. Titles such as Alan J. Pakula's "The Parallax View" and "All the King's Men", and also James Bridges' "The China Syndrome" all presented the reporters as tireless professionals, idealistic and focused on a tireless pursuit in presenting the truth to the masses. James Vanderbilt's film follows a very similar concept, echoing the tone, but adjusting the context for the present, slowly building the momentum and giving insight into the key players and into the story itself. The film lets the characters be drawn in an engaging way, particularly Cate Blanchett's Mary Mapes, who is depicted as an intelligent, resourceful and also fallible woman, who suddenly sees herself as a target of thinly veiled conspiracy. The supporting characters, such as Robert Redford's Dan Rather, and their investigation team, though not as flushed out, make for an interesting and diversified group and create a compelling backdrop for the investigation that is the basis of the film. The film boasts a fantastic cast, with Cate Blanchett and Robert Redford creating great characters, well supported by Dennis Quaid, John Benjamin Hickey and Topher Grace.  The cinematography from Mandy Walker (who worked on Baz Luhrmann's "Australia") is fantastic, and the score from Brian Tyler is equally good. A very good film worth watching.