When a cover up in US Government which has spanned over four Presidents the newspapers must risk everything to publish the papers covering the Vietnam war which will shock and anger the public.
Kay Graham is the first female publisher and that creates many more challenges to go along with the decisions she must make. The Washington Post formerly belonging to her father who had left it to her husband to run, but she had to take the reins when he took his own life. Constantly battling with all of the men who were members of the board and well pretty much didn’t want her to be in charge. Ben Bradlee is the hard-driving editor who really wants to push the boundaries and keep close with the New York Times.
Something is extremely engaging when watching films about newspapers and the reports really looking to try to break a huge story. I think that could be because it is very different now, the rise of social media and the internet does not really leave anything for the newspaper business when everything can be broken within seconds of finding out about it. It just all looks so exciting to be part of those newsrooms as they battled to break the story first. In this case the New York Times managed to get the papers on the Vietnam war but then President Nixon stopped them from publishing anymore. That was not the end of it for Bradlee as he was more determinate to get the papers so they could publish in the Washington Post.
This will then leave Graham with some groundbreaking decisions to make if they manage to find those papers, will they publish and risk everything? Has the first amendment been broken?
Let’s face it I have been looking forward to seeing this film for a long time, who wouldn’t want to watch a Spielberg film with Hanks and Streep in the leading roles? It certainly is a formula that works in such a powerful way. Streep putting in a very strong performance but also capturing the fear Graham had for being a woman in a position that had so much power but the men would not accept anything she did. Hanks was as usual outstanding, would we expect anything less? Truly engaging as Bradlee and it was a joy to watch them both on-screen together which has surely been overdue!
This is a very important film when you think about how the events in it allowed the press to continue to have freedom of speech and be able to publish events which were important for the public to know about. Also causing more backlash over the war in Vietnam confirming that the US would not admit it was wrong because they didn’t want to actually admit defeat and lose the war, which basically admits responsibility for the deaths of many young men who served in the US Army.
A truly engaging film with brilliant performances from all of the cast and I can totally understand why it has the Awards Season buzz around it as it certainly is that type of film, but it does have some very important messages. Quite fitting that we would get a film like this at this time of year, fits in perfectly with the standard we have grown to expect.