ENTERTAINMENT
11/01/2018 16:44 GMT | Updated 29/01/2018 05:33 GMT

‘The Post’: More Than 40 Years Later, The Film's Story Is Just As Important - HuffPost Verdict

Our spoiler-free review of Streep, Hanks and Spielberg's new offering.

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K E Y   P O I N T S

  • The film tells the true story of publisher Kay Graham and Washington Post editor Ben Bradlee’s roles in the publication of the Pentagon Papers
  • ‘The Post’ unites the Hollywood Holy Trinity of Meryl Streep, Tom Hanks and director Steven Spielberg
  • With awards season in full swing, ‘The Post’ received six nominations at this year’s Golden Globes, with plenty of Oscar buzz already, particularly around its leading stars, director and the composer of its score, John Williams
  • Supporting members of the talented cast include Sarah Paulson, David Cross, Bob Odenkirk, Alison Brie and Michael Stuhlbarg
  • Many critics have pointed out that the film’s key themes - the freedom of the press and industry-based sexism (in this case journalism) - are as prevalent in 2018 as they were in the early 1970s, when the film was set.

S N A P   V E R D I C T

‘The Post’ is a historical look back at one of the biggest political scandals to ever rock America, starring arguably two of the brightest stars in Hollywood, Meryl Streep and Tom Hanks.

You don’t need us to tell you that Meryl Streep can act (her 20 Academy Award nominations do that), but while some of her more recent projects have required her to ham it up, ‘The Post’ proves that she’s more than capable of making us feel without chewing the scenery.

It’s her subtle moments as Kay Graham that stand out; the small looks of disappointment as a boardroom of men completely ignore her every time she offers up a point and the uncertainty she conveys when faced with a number of ethical dilemmas.

The real talking point of the film is the theme of the freedom of the press, and more specifically, just how prevalent it feels in an era with a certain former ‘Apprentice’ star sitting in the Oval Office.

While it tackles a specific moment in history, those without a background knowledge of the Pentagon Papers needn’t be put off, as the script makes everything accessible and easy to understand without feeling too patronising or pandering.

That being said, if American politics or 20th century historical dramas aren’t your thing, there’s probably something else out at the cinema that could hold your attention a little better.

B E S T   L I N E S

The press was to serve the governed, not the governors.”
When you’re told time and time again that you’re not good enough, that your opinion doesn’t matter as much... when they don’t just look past you, when to them you’re not even there... when that’s been your reality for so long it’s hard not to let yourself think it’s true. So to make this decision, to risk her fortune and the company that’s been her entire life? Well, I think that’s brave…” Sarah Paulson as Tony Bradlee
If we don’t hold them accountable, who will?” Tom Hanks as Ben Bradlee

T A K E   H O M E   M E S S A G E

Moments such as when the voice of Richard Nixon is heard, furiously banning Washington Post reporters from the White House, really drive home that history does have a tendency to repeat itself.

However, any viewers exhausted by the current political system would do well to remember how this particular story ends.

‘The Post’ is in UK cinemas from Friday, 12 January.

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