Parents' Guide to

Good Night, and Good Luck

By Cynthia Fuchs, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 13+

Compelling political drama won't engage most kids.

Movie PG 2005 90 minutes
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Elegant, deft, focused, and shot in exquisite black and white, the film is partly reverential, partly probing. As Murrow reads from his award acceptance speech, you realize that this work is not only investigative or even resistant to the powers that be, but gorgeously written. If you come away from Good Night and Good Luck with nothing else, you will come away with renewed appreciation for luminous prose.

Selected images from the HUAC hearings are often riveting, as when McCarthy accuses Annie Lee Moss of being a communist, a charge so patently baseless that a committee member finally demanded that McCarthy and lawyer Roy Cohn produce proof of the charges. More artificial and so more provocative are inserts of jazz singer Dianne Reeves; apparently recording in a CBS studio some standards that comment on the action. While artists -- and here, no coincidence, a black woman artist -- might have and even pronounce insight into the bluesy world we all inhabit, the folks in the upper floor offices don't hear it.

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