Directed by Steven Spielberg
"The Post", a well-depicted journalistic drama based on true events, marks the awaited return of Steven Spielberg to direction, and stars the fantastic duo Tom Hanks and Meryl Streep as the main protagonists.
Written by Liz Hannah and Josh Singer (“Spotlight”), the story is a reconstruction of the 1971 battle between Richard Nixon’s government and the respected American journalists of the Washington Post and New York Times, who decided to publish the Pentagon papers that disclose the embarrassing truth behind the Vietnam War. The facts had been concealed from the public for thirty years.
The marvelous Ms. Streep embodies Katherine Graham, the first female newspaper owner and publisher, who has the power of decision when in possession of such incriminatory documents. On one hand, as a person of contacts, she has a few friends in the government that would be implicated in the political scandal, plus the possibility of losing everything her family had built if the major investors withdraw their money; on the other hand, she faces the responsibility of defending press freedom and ensure the true mission of an independent newspaper.
Persuaded by her tenacious editor-in-chief Ben Bradlee (Hanks), who got his hard-working team sorting through four thousand unnumbered pages, Katherine, with tears in her eyes and a flickering voice, will have to make the most difficult decision of her life. Pressures and tension are everywhere, from battles for information and revelation of sources to Supreme Court’s deliberations.
Besides tremendously elucidative, “The Post” is detailed but not boring, triumphant but not ostentatious, disciplined but not tacky. Still, it lacks that emotional knockout punch that other major journalistic films such as “Spotlight” and “All The President’s Men” can brag to have delivered. Hence, if the moments of indecision and resolve are the working organs that make this body of work function correctly, then Meryl Street is both its heart and soul.
Although better in the message than in the art of entertaining, this conspiracy disentanglement is pure respect for freedom and an ode to righteousness.