Dir; Steven Spielberg. Starring; Tom Hanks, Meryl Streep, Bob Odenkirk. 2017. PG-13. Color. 116 min.
Society desires to learn from the mistakes of the past. History continues to be cyclical. “The Post” tells the story of a group of Washington Post reporters breaking the news that political corruption has spanned several Presidents, coming to a head during the Nixon administration. A story of evil that should have ended almost 60 years ago. The screenplay by Liz Hannah and Josh Singer is even more important today than it was when these journalists originally broke the story.
Tom Hanks plays Ben Bradlee, a full-fledged Journalist. He is seasoned and understands the politics of reporting at a newspaper in Washington. Meryl Streep plays Kay Graham, the owner of the prestigious Washington Post. Graham has become a rich debutante, and is concerned more with her papers numbers than actual reporting. After a long series of events, Bradlee has his hands on the famous Pentagon Papers, and a story that could help take down even the President himself. Kay Graham has a choice to make. Does she pander to the elites or does she publish a story that is true and honest?
Before the Facebook/Instagram/Twitter era, newspapers had the power to hire and fire politicians in America. That cyclical nature of history I mentioned is what “The Post” taps into so well. It reminds you that before “Net Neutrality”, people had to fight against the “Vietnam War”.
“The Post” is made by true professionals. The screenplay is fantastic. What the film lacks is edge, and that is what keeps it from being great instead of just really good. We have a legendary roster of actors and filmmakers. Spielberg, Hanks, Streep, cinematographer Janusz Kamiski, composer John Williams. This is a movie full of brilliant people doing their best job of doing everything by the numbers. There is no passion here. Spielberg must have his characters make their speeches about how important this subject is instead of just letting the human beings tell the story, because that is what he does.
“The Post” takes some time to catch its footing, but the ending will have you rooting in the theater. I would ask TRUMP supporters to see this film, and I’m guessing that is what Spielberg is going for. This is not a classic by any means. It is full of flaws, but this film tells an important story. If I am a history teacher at a High School, “The Post” is an excellent choice to show American history in the 1960’s. A history that is unfortunately being repeated. One 16-year-old standing up against corruption makes this film worth making. I tip my hat to Spielberg for knowing that concept rings true here.
Suck Factor: 2 out of 7 (7 means your movie really SUCKS!)
Written by Byrd
*The Suck Factor! – How it Works
I’ve flipped the switch on the standard rating system for film criticism. Instead of rating a movie with stars or letters representing how good a film is, I rank films from 0 to 7 to tell you how much a movie SUCKS! So if the film is a masterpiece, like “The Godfather” for example, then it gets a 0 on my scale, meaning the movie gives 0 SUCKS! If the movie is absolutely terrible, for instance every Michael Bay film, it scores a 7 so you know to avoid it at all costs.
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