FIND THE TRUTH.
Investigative reporters Cal McAffrey and Della Frye (Russell Crowe, Rachel McAdams) look into several deaths that are linked to a House committee hearing chaired by Cal’s old buddy, Representative Stephen Collins (Ben Affleck). The British six-hour miniseries has been boiled down to a two-hour movie set in Washington, but that’s not a problem. This is an exciting thriller that delivers its twists with credibility and also updates the story to one that touches on Blackwater operations in Iraq and the depressingly decreasing role of serious journalism in the era of dying newspapers. The star-studded cast do their share, including Jason Bateman as the PR man who finds himself in too deep.
2009-U.S.-Britain-France. 127 min. Color. Widescreen. Produced by Andrew Hauptman, Eric Fellner, Tim Bevan. Directed by Kevin Macdonald. Screenplay: Matthew Michael Carnahan, Tony Gilroy, Billy Ray. Cast: Russell Crowe (Cal McAffrey), Ben Affleck (Stephen Collins), Rachel McAdams (Della Frye), Helen Mirren, Robin Wright Penn, Jason Bateman… Jeff Daniels, Viola Davis.
Trivia: Edward Norton and Brad Pitt were originally cast, but dropped out; Edward Zwick was allegedly considered for directing duties.
Last word: “I told them Russell Crowe was the best of the A-list actors. So they sent him a script, and two days later he sent me an e-mail saying he was intrigued. But if I wanted to talk more, I had to go and see him in Australia. I flew all the way down there, then Russell sent a helicopter for me to take me to his ranch. We spent 12 hours together, and we inspected all his cattle. Then his mother drove me back to the airport. When I got back, he sent word that he’d do it.” (Macdonald, The Telegraph)