Truth, Blu-ray (2016)

A well-done journalistic thriller centered on Dan Rather.

Truth, Blu-ray (2016)

Cast: Cate Blanchett, Robert Redford, Elisabeth Moss, Dennis Quaid
Director: James Vanderbilt
Studio: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment 46952 (2/2/16)
Video: 2.40:1 for 16:9 screens, 1080p HD color
Audio: English DTS-HD MA 5.1, DD 5.1 audio descriptive track
Subtitles: English, English SDH
Extras: Commentary track by Vanderbilt & producers Brad Fischer & Wm. Sherak, The Team, Q&A with Cate Blanchett, Elizabeth Moss & Vanderbilt, Deleted scenes, Featurette: The Reason for Being with Dan Rather
Length: 125 min.
Rating: ****

Truth is based on the true story of the CBS News staff being involved in one of network news’ biggest scandals ever. Blanchett plays Mary Mapes, who works closely with Dan Rather and believes she has broken a big story on 60 Minutes in the 2004 election – the revelations of President George Bush not having taken part in his military service that he got preferential treatment for, but has taken credit for it.

After the story is presented on the air it comes out that some of the documents used in good faith were in fact false, and allegations come pouring in, resulting in a legal battle, several dramatic casualties, and producer Mapes/Blanchett losing her job, plus Rather apologizing on the air.

Another writer pointed out the similarity of this story to that of Mike Wallace in the film The Insider. The politics are brutal and self-protective of Bush, when the sense of the report was merely that Bush had not in effect done his military service as publicized. Although we know how the story ends, the film and acting tell it very well and keep up one’s interest thruout.

The acting of both Blanchett and Redford is superb, although Redford looks nothing like Dan Rather. The last of the extras, the on-camera chat with Rather, is in some ways the most interesting part of the film. He muses on What Is Truth? and says the news is about “what’s happening to you and why you should care.”

—John Sunier

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