Monday, February 20, 2006

A Gorgeous Civics Lesson

by George Clooney

George Clooney’s second directorial effort, Good Night, and Good Luck is a lusciously photographed black and white film that skillfully tells a story of journalistic confrontation. By weaving together actors and sets with archival footage the film becomes a bit more than a drama. While the film seemed a bit distant to me, it doesn’t focus on the personal lives of the characters in any depth, but on the work that they are doing and how it affects them. The distance isn’t accidental as the film is carefully shot and constructed with a journalistic tone that focuses on facts. I loved how it was constructed with no music except for music that comes from a television program in a studio. It’s a clever device that provides a nice jazz motif to break up the tension of the newsroom. There are also great touches with the details and bits of programs that now have radically different contexts. David Strathairn gives yet another perfect performance which is made even stronger in the way that it is shot. He can’t hide behind makeup or effects and the luxurious shooting style seems to bring out the best in the cast. An important film that is also a bold statement on the current state of journalism today.

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