ROGER THOMAS FILM REVIEW: A brave story for these times we are living

Published 1:55 pm Wednesday, October 30, 2019

Note: This is a harsh film that portrays violence and torture. It is rated R.

One of the best times at the theater is when one goes into a film knowing little or nothing about it, and comes out inspired, challenged or even angry.

Roger Thomas

“The Report” is one of those films. The plot is based on truth. And beyond the lesson of the film, hopefully others will learn about this harsh, bold and brave era.

It isn’t easy to watch. But many will be proud they saw it, and the truth of the story should be seen for many reasons — most of all so our nation and its citizens will strive to make the world compassionate whenever humanity is capable to do that. Our government should keep us safe.

However, what are the limits?

There are other positive attributes about this bold film. One of the greatest is the cast. The two leads are played by Adam Driver and Annette Benning. Both of those do great performances. Driver plays Daniel J. Jones and Benning plays Sen. Dianne Feinstein.

There are several other cast members that are familiar — Jon Hamm, Sarah Goldberg, Michael C. Hall, Douglas Hodge, Fajer Kaisi, Ted Levine, Jennifer Morrison, Tim Black Nelson, Linda Powell, Matthew Rhys, T. Ryder Smith, Cory Stoll and Maura Thierney. Obviously it takes a large cast to tell this broad narrative.

“The Report” was written and directed by Scott Z. Burns. He is a writer of “Contagion,” “The Bourne Ultimatum” and ‘The Informant,” among other projects through the years.

There are many reasons why this film stands with Burns’ other projects. This story is based on truth. As with all films, there are probably details that are not perfectly depicted in the film. There are probably ones who will be making lists of the inaccuracies. However, it is the total sum of the film that will count.

In this era we live in, there are many half-truths and full lies in our government and those who are supposed to secure our nation often choose something less than the best for the people.

That is why “The Report” is such a good film. The film portrays a time when those who were serving the nation were not following a path that would be best for the country and all the people.

In “The Report,” there are many things to ponder. If one sees the film, one will most likely come out of it with an opinion. Every person is free to decide on their opinion, but is there actual “right and wrong, truth and lies?” The film has an opinion. Perhaps most people who see the film will have an opinion as well.

May that opinion be a strong one. Speak for the film or debate against it, but speak the truth.

The voice of truth should be spoken loud and boldly.

Once again, “The Report” is one of the best films of 2019. I hope those who made the film will get some awards for it.

Roger W. Thomas of Albemarle reviews films for The Stanly News & Press.