Good Night And Good Luck
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The story is of the confrontation between McCarthy and the distinguished CBS newsman Ed Murrow, famous for his broadcasts from London during the Blitz ("Goodnight, and good luck" was his London sign-off - after all, nobody knew whether there was a Luftwaffe bomb with your name on it - which he kept). On his CBS news show, Murrow calmly and methodically exposed McCarthy for the humbug that he was, and when McCarthy tried to smear him, equally calmly and methodically took him apart. It was the end of the road for McCarthyism (although the whole travesty of un-American activities, blacklisted Hollywood writers, etc., was to continue for some years).
The film is in black and white and features director George Clooney in a secondary role. Murrow is played by David Strathairn, who looks passably like Murrow, and he does a splendid job as the determined journalist. No actor plays McCarthy, he being played by himself, on old TV recordings. Another good role is CBS's long-suffering boss, forever on the verge of becoming a nervous wreck because of the fear of Murrow's crusading scaring away the sponsors.Read more ›
Murrow and his producer and partner, Fred Friendly (George Clooney) decided to take this matter in their hands when faced with a case that, even though not involving McCarthy directly, was an excellent example of the climate of fear the nation was living in. The following step was to attack McCarthy´s methods, using the senator`s own words and footage of audiences of the Committee McCarthy presided. Murrow pointed truths that many had forgotten, that is, that accusation is not proof, and that “We cannot defend freedom abroad by disserting it at home”. He also made his viewers remember that “We must not confuse dissent with disloyalty. When the loyal opposition dies, I think the soul of America dies with it”.
“Good night and good luck” was directed by George Clooney, and based on a script he cowrote with Grant Heslov. In my opinion, it is a truly outstanding film. Of course, it is entertaining, and has a superb cast. But the real reason why you really should watch this movie is that it brings home some important lessons about responsibility, the responsibility of journalists but also that of citizens. Unfortunately, that is something we all tend to forget, from time to time.
In conclusion, and just in case I haven´t made myself clear, HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.
This is not a bio-pic, but a morality play. So do not expect any scrawl at the end explaining what happened to Murrow, McCarthy and the rest of the characters (the film implicitly says "shame on you" if you do not know already). It is about the events leading up to and the aftermath of the March 9, 1954 broadcast of a "See It Now" special entitled "A Report on Senator Joseph McCarthy," put together by Murrow (David Strathairn) and producer Fred Friendly (Clooney). Three weeks later McCarthy was given an opportunity to refute the charges on the show, but instead resorted to his standard practice of denouncing anybody who dared to attack him, essentially completing the job that Murrow had begun. However, the victory Murrow and Friendly won did not come without a cost, as see in the tragic story of Don Hollenbeck (Ray Wise) and the decisions CBS chairman William S. Paley (Frank Langella) made regarding the future of Murrow on television based on economic considerations.
"Good Night, and Good Lucky" makes a series of strategic stories to tell the story. First, because all of the appearances of Murrow and McCarthy on television were in black & white, the entire film ends up being done that way.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
the studios wanted clooney to play murrow
they wanted a "star" but clooney insisted on strathairn
I bought this soley for the soundtrack which I picked up on CD in a secondhand shop and was intrigued to know what the film was like. I was very pleasantly surprised. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Tony_Wales
but I was beguiled by the rich smokey dark treacle like feel of it all. Excellent performance from the main man and the sound was, like the visuals, really rich.Published 6 months ago by TK