Monday, October 14, 2013


The Fifth Estate (2013) - Condon
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There should be a rule in Hollywood that forbids making movies about current affairs that are less than 5 years old. With a grand, manipulative soundtrack, The Fifth Estate is everything I hate about Hollywood biopic. There is absolutely no exciting way to portray computer based info war in films, so Condon and Co. resort to very unhip, breezy 'text across actors' faces' style. Then there is the fake Argo suspense involving Libyan family (friends of concerned State Department employee played by Laura Linney) crossing the border after Bradley Manning's Wikileak of the Pentagon papers. There is a scene where Linney character dismisses Manning as "a 22 year old kid who has mental problems" even. I could give too shits about Julian Assange's private life. He could really be an egotistic rapist people make him out to be. So what if he was? It seems Condon and the screenwriter of the film don't care about anything. Is the film for transparency in our Gov't? Is it saying Assange was reckless man who put people in danger? Is it supposed to be a commentary about a new era of information age? The only good scene is near the end where The Guardian editor in chief played by David Thewlis and Wikileak's former cohort/friend Daniel Berg played by Daniel Brühl talking about the impact of Wikileaks. Benedict Cumberbach and the rest of the cast do a great job. But with its muddled message and by-the-numbers Hollywood filmmaking, only thing general moviegoing public would take away from the theater is this: Assange is a creepy asshole. Ugh.

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