Good Night, and Good Luck
Limited Release – Check you local newspapers for theaters and show-times.
“Good Night, And Good Luck.” takes place during the early days of broadcast journalism in 1950’s America. It chronicles the real-life conflict between television newsman Edward R. Murrow and Senator Joseph McCarthy and the Permanent Sub-committee on Investigations (Government Operations Committee). With a desire to report the facts and enlighten the public, Murrow, and his dedicated staff – headed by his producer Fred Friendly and Joe Wershba in the CBS newsroom – defy corporate and sponsorship pressures to examine the lies and scaremongering tactics perpetrated by McCarthy during his communist ‘witch-hunts’. A very public feud develops when the Senator responds by accusing the anchor of being a communist. In this climate of fear and reprisal, the CBS crew carries on and their tenacity will prove historic and monumental.
This film focuses on the conflict between McCarthy and Murrow, not on the hearings themselves. Clooney has taken original news footage and woven it into his movie allowing McCarthy to represent himself in this docu-drama. Context is key and since I am not a historian, I will not make any comments as to the accurate use of the footage shown. One thing I did find interesting was a discussion that took place between the President of CBS (William Paley) and Murrow about censorship. During the conversation, Paley tells Murrow that even he (Murrow) censors things in his news broadcasts by not giving the full story and sites an example.
This film will only be appealing to a specific crowd. Journalism majors will probably be watching this annually in the classroom. Hopefully under the guidance of a Professor who will conduct a debate following the viewing that will dig a little deeper into the issues raised in the movie. As for Dove, we cannot approve this film due to the inclusion of 2 GDs that could have easily been removed before the film’s release.