By Nina Karimi
“Good Night, and Good Luck” is not your typical Hollywood film full of conventional action, cliff hangers, and romance. It is however a masterpiece of its time, about an era that many Americans try to forget. George Clooney, an esteemed American Actor and director of this film tried to capture a period of time known as the McCarthy Era where the “red scare” or fear of communism allowed the Senator from Wisconsin to try and convict suspected traitors. Its historical accuracy with real footage, quotations, and individuals, along with the distinct characteristics of Edward R. Murrow by actor David Strathairn are remarkably accurate. The film takes place virtually entirely in the CBS newsroom and is during the early days of television broadcasting in the 1950s. Edward R. Murrow was and always will be a celebrated broadcasting journalist and in this film we see he and his dedicated staff opposing Joseph McCarthy’s harsh methods. We were clearly reminded both subtly and bluntly throughout the film that doing such things during this time was very dangerous with the loss of advertisers, threats from military colonels, O’Brian newspaper attacks, and Don Hollenbeck’s possible suicide. Even the seemingly irrelevant fact that Shirley and Joe Wirshba feared having their secret marriage discovered highlighted the feelings America was having at the time. When the CBS program vocalized its view on McCarthy as shown with Murrow’s words of “but the line between investigating and persecuting is a very fine one, and the Junior Senator from Wisconsin has stepped over it repeatedly,” the fire was started. Through actual footage of McCarthy responding to Murrow’s claims, we see just the methods the Senator used with falsely accusing and labeling any criticizer as a communist or a communist sympathizer. It was a great device to begin and end the film with a speech Murrow gave in 1958 where he explains that our flaw is to... [continues]
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