OFFICIAL SECRETS – A Review by Cynthia Flores

 

OFFICIAL SECRETS – A Review by Cynthia Flores

A whistle-blower story, especially one based on real-life events is a hard movie to make.  If the story was ripped-from-the-headlines, like this film, then everybody knows how it ends.  What this new film Official Secrets gives us is the juicy bits before the headlines.

The movie tells the story of Katherine Gun (Keira Knightly), a British intelligence specialist who in 2003 leaked to the press an NSA memo about a blackmail scheme targeting United Nations Security Council Members coercing them to vote in favor of the Iraq War.  At great peril to herself and her husband Jasar (Adam Bakri) who was in the final stages of getting his papers to stay in England, she did the right thing.

The director/co-writer Gavin Hood does a brilliant job keeping the tension going in the different areas that we see affected by the leak.  From Katherine’s tormented decision to become a whistle-blower.  To the newspaper reporters who, against pressure to drop it, believed the information they got.  They go to great lengths to prove it’s true before they go to print.

This is a taut, well-paced film similar to the 1976 film All the President’s Men.  I give Official Secrets an A- only because it stars my least favorite actress in the lead.

 

Directed by Gavin Hood

Written by Gregory Bernstein, Sara Bernstein, Gavin Hood

Rated R

Selig Rating A-

Running Time 1hr 51min

Drama / Biography

Limited Release September 13th Landmarks Magnolia Theater, Cinemark West Plano and XD

Starring: Keira Knightley, Indira Varma, Ralph Fiennes, Rhys Ifans, Matthew Goode, Adam Bakri

 

The Selig Rating Scale:

A – Excellent movie, well worth the price.

B – Good movie

C – OK movie

D – No need to rush. Save it for a rainy day.

F – Good that I saw it on the big screen but wish I hadn’t paid for it.

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