Saturday, November 2, 2013

Movie Review: "The Fifth Estate" (2013)

Movie: "The Fifth Estate"
Director: Bill Condon
Rating: R
Running Time: 2 hours, 8 minutes
Image Source
A portrayal of Wikileaks founder Julian Assange ("Eggs" Benedict Cumberbatch) and Daniel Berg (Daniel Bruhl), an early employee of the site and disciple of Assange's. Assange and Berg worked together in order to expose injustices, reveal truths and lies, and to bring down corrupt entities by giving whistle-blowers anonymity and a place to post their secrets without repercussion.

Well, one thing is for sure: I've been talking like Benedict Cumberbatch talked like Julian Assange since seeing this movie.

Cumberbatch and Bruhl both do amazing jobs with what they are given and give fine performances, as always. Cumberbatch, especially, did a fantastic job in mimicking Assange's diction (just with a deeper tonality), so much so, that his normal suave British accent is nowhere to be found. It seems hard to create tension with two guys in a room posting things onto a website and clicking keys rapidly. The metaphor of an office without any walls or a ceiling and endless desks to signify the idea of Wikileaks constantly runs throughout the film, and some might find it odd and/or artsy-fartsy, but we didn't really mind it.

Julian Assange, still very much alive, vehemently rejects this film and everything it stands for. They actually show an interview with Cumber-sange in the movie talking about how bad the movie is and how much he disagrees with it being made, and it was very weird to see play out on screen. Even though it seemed a bit thrown in at the end of the movie, that entire speech was good and we liked it. Assange was worried about being portrayed in a bad light in this film, and in some ways it does showcase him negatively, but it doesn't portray Wikileaks badly. Maybe he has a chip on his shoulder about Daniel Berg being portrayed in a more positive light, or maybe he's just bitter in general.  Even though this movie shows Assange's personal flaws, it doesn't criticize the genius invention of Wikileaks and the painstaking craftsmanship that went into creating it.

Some of the movie's execution seems a bit messy throughout, but otherwise, it's a pretty decent political thriller that will make you want to research Wikileaks when you get home. Watch "We Steal Secrets," too.

PS: German music (aside from Rammestein) BLOWS.

My Rating: 6/10
BigJ's Rating: 6.5/10
IMDB's Rating: 5.7/10
Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 37%
Do we recommend this movie: Sure, why not?

No comments:

Post a Comment