Saturday, December 23, 2006

Movie time

Saturday night was time for a movie- so I picked up Good night and good luck! Good movie rather short I must say but then its one of those movies of the perfect length which just left me asking for a little more. It’s about a team of reporters at CBS which decides to take up cudgels against Senator Joseph McCarthy and his tactics at maligning anyone he wanted to, a communist.

Completely enjoyed the movie and the concepts of freedom it discusses. Its set in the time when the reign of fear launched by McCarthy was at its peak. Senator McCarthy had made an accusation that 200 card carrying communists had infiltrated the US government and were working towards destabilising the country and its value system. He had been appointed to a committee that was in charge of identifying these communists and exposing them. In the process of doing so, he destroyed the lives of many loyal American citizens by false accusations and relying on hearsay and rumour. Most people were too wary to voice dissent against his ways lest they be denounced communists too.

Ed Murrow at the CBS along with his team of journalists decided that it was time to call a spade a spade and went about systematically informing the American citizens about the deviousness of the ways employed by the Senator from Wisconsin. The highlight of the movie is the broadcast by Ed Murrow where he launches a frontal attack on the Senator. He talks about a lot of things- the Senator’s tendency to terrorize, threaten, cajole and coerce people. He talks about the need to consider our freedom as a responsibility and to voice our opinions no matter which side of the spectrum they fall upon. What I find particularly interesting is how most of us take our freedoms such as the right to express opinions and to exercise our options, complacently. Yet if we had ever had this freedom threatened that is when we would recognize and acknowledge its importance. It’s no wonder that people who have lived behind the Iron curtain consider freedom that the western world sometimes so easily refers to, as hallowed.

In the end in response to a quote from Shakespeare by the Senator, Ed Murrow quotes Cassius- “The funny thing is Brutus, the fault lies not with our stars but within ourselves.”

Good night and good luck!


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